FightLikeAGirl's Journey with Breast Cancer

Survivor: Breast Cancer

Patient Info: Finished active treatment more than 5 years ago, Diagnosed: almost 12 years ago, Female, Age: 49, Stage III, HER2 Positive: No, ER Positive: Yes, PR Positive: Yes

  1. 1
    about 5 years ago
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    Relationship issues

    Oh No

    My best friend/husband of 16 years unexpectedly left a note at home to pursue an internet relationship he had developed with another woman.

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  2. 2
    about 5 years ago
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    Money

    Oh No

    A full year into the divorce, my husband (now ex) was fired from his lucrative executive position leaving myself and 4 children with no income or health insurance

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  3. 3
    about 5 years ago
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    Diagnosed

    Oh No

    Within 1 month of our loss of finances, I was diagnosed with stage III invasive ductal breast cancer.

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  4. 4
    about 5 years ago
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    Surgery

    Procedure or Surgery

    Because all of the preliminary tests (mammogram, ultrasound, MRI and needle biopsy) led to inconslusive results, I had to undergo an outpatient surgery in order to get a more definite result. Although this surgery was easy, outpatient surgery, I was an emotional mess considering the previous traumatic events that had brought me to this point. I knew something was really wrong.

    Went as Expected: Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Agree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Disagree
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  5. 5
    about 5 years ago
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    Diagnosed

    Oh No

    Surgeon disclosed information that large tumor was cancer and lumpectomy would be performed within 2 weeks. My mom was with me at diagnosis and she cried. She had been diagnosed stage IV 7 years earlier and had full comprehension of what I was going to have to endure.

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  6. 6
    about 5 years ago
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    Lumpectomy

    Procedure or Surgery

    Upon having my first lumpectomy, the surgeon was dissatisfied. The margins were not clear and he suspected lymph node involvement. He knew at that time that a masectomy was needed, but knew I wold need time to accept that.

    Went as Expected: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Recovery: Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Agree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Disagree
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  7. 7
    about 5 years ago
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    Axillary Lymph Node Dissection

    Procedure or Surgery

    My masectomy was accompanied by the lymph node dissection. My surgeon took 29 nodes of which 9 were positively infected. This surgery was by far the most invasive and hardest to bounce back from. The pain extended under the arm and into the lat muscle on the side of my back. There was resulting swelling in the arm as well.

    Went as Expected: Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Side Effects: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Disagree
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  8. 8
    about 5 years ago
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    Relationship

    Loss

    Finally divorced from my high school sweetheart after almost 2 years of litigation. Also lost all of my extended family and most of my friends as they were "couple" friends.

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  9. 9
    about 5 years ago
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    Chemotherapy

    Drug or Chemo Therapy

    The psychological impact of having poison injected into my veins in order to kill cells was difficult to accept. I am a very physically active person and just having to sit through hours of "drip" was extremely difficult for me.

    Easy to Do: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Side Effects: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Disagree
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  10. 10
    about 5 years ago
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    Medicine for low white blood cell count

    Drug or Chemo Therapy

    Hated the Nulasta injections shortly after treatments to boost my cell count. They left me feeling like every bone in my body was broken. I usually woke up in the middle of the night in agony, but got accustomed to the timing of it so that I could try and treat the pain before it started.

    Easy to Do: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Side Effects: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Disagree
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  11. 11
    about 5 years ago
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    Chemotherapy

    Drug or Chemo Therapy

    Chemo got easier with time. It was difficult being exhausted all of the time with 4 young children to care for. I also dropped to 105 pounds being nauseated constantly. I couldn't even eat salad!

    Easy to Do: Disagree
    Minimal Side Effects: Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Disagree
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  12. 12
    about 5 years ago
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    Celebration

    This person has yet to add any details about this experience.

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  13. 13
    about 5 years ago
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    hair

    Loss

    I knew it would only be a matter of a couple of treatments before i lost my hair, but it was still difficult. After losing a breast, a woman's hair feels like one of the only "feminine" things left.

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