This is my story, on how self-checking my breasts saved my life.
We have no history of the disease in our family, but I’ve always been fairly healthy and on top of health checks generally. Having heard of a high school’s friend passing from breast cancer at the age of 41, I thought best to check myself…not remembering when I had last checked.
And so, in January of 2016 (at the age of 40) whilst in the shower I checked my breasts…and there it was! Quite a prominent lump that felt like nothing else I had ever come across during previous checks. I knew instantly that something wasn’t right. What followed is now a blur of memories from those overwhelming first few weeks – the shock is still something I’m working my way through.
After 18 months of treatment, and general good health, I’m now embarking on breast reconstruction. It’s a slow process, which is just as well, I don’t think I could cope with having 2 “normal breasts” so soon after all that’s happened ☺ It’s a road I didn’t think I’d ever have to travel, but I’m thankful for all the miracles and purpose it’s brought me – life lessons and experiences I would’ve otherwise never had.
Coming across people like Jo has been incredibly encouraging and in some ways reassuring. It’s important to stay positive and where there’s the opportunity connect with other survivors, especially those whose journeys are now a fair way along its path. Talking over experiences, swapping stories and sharing moments with those that have walked along the road before us can be incredibly comforting.
Don’t forget, check your boobs and encourage others to do the same…check their boobs not yours ☺