Whitney Diagnosed at 33
On March 7, 2014 I was diagnosed with HER2+, Stage I breast cancer. I was 33 years old. My life as I knew it was turned upside down. I remember the moment as clear as day. I was in the car on my way to work when my doctor called. The only answer I could muster was "oh." I hung up the phone, changed course to my boyfriend's house and then met my family at the doctor's office for the start of what I can only describe as a whirlwind.
Getting cancer is sort of like running a marathon. Shortly after my diagnosis I was bumped up to stage 2B. The next month consisted of almost daily doctor's appointments (some with multiple appointments in a day) to include MRI's, Cat scans, biopsies, an oophorectomy which sent me into an early menopause, and finally, a double mastectomy. I experienced almost every emotion that you might imagine - shock, fear for myself and my young daughter, and the thought....but I'm only 33, how is this happening?
During my treatments, I went into battle mode. I had my moments on those awful days on steroids, but I had to remain strong for my own sanity and for those around me. Serenity Now! But now I have learned to allow myself to feel the full range of emotions. I won't pretend that it isn't a roller coaster.
Beside my treatments, my family and friends saved my life. The support and love I received was constant and they will never truly know how grateful I am.
Now, almost a year later, I still have one surgery looming and maintenance treatments. But, my cancer is gone. I'm still running the marathon, the finish line is in sight and I won my battle. Breast cancer did not ruin my life. I hug my loved ones a little closer and look forward to a bright future ahead.
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