There are so many stories on FORCE and so many members willing to share their experiences. We hope these profiles can help you connect with our community and get advice from people like you!
BRCA1 and BRCA 2 + Increased surveillance. Prophylactic Oophorectomy Mastectomies (after diagnosis) with implant on left breast and lat flap
I'm more than my risk… some fun facts about myself:
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I’m 50, divorced with two sons, and of Ashkenazi Jewish descent. My maternal grandmother, great aunt (grandmother's sister), aunt (mother's sister), and my mother all had breast cancer. I was tested after I too was diagnosed with breast cancer. I lost my mother to cancer of the common bile duct; my older sister is also a breast cancer survivor.
Being diagnosed with cancer a second time - and having a massive MRSA infection after surgery.
If I had known how likely it was that I would have a second breast cancer, I might have chosen to have a double mastectomy when I was first diagnosed, rather than choosing a lumpectomy and radiation. I could have avoided two surgeries and chemotherapy.
It is helpful to know that I am not alone in this battle.
I am a single mother of two boys - my ex and I were separated 2 years before my first diagnosis. I worked full time as an engineer while going through radiation therapy in 2000 and chemotherapy in 2006.
My congregation and the Mothers of Middle Schoolers group at my boys' school was a great help to me. My heroines are Patti M. and Janet R. my "Laundry Fairies"; Julie W. who stayed with me when I had a bad drug reaction and wouldn't take “No” for an answer from my doctor; Rachel Z., who didn't know me but offered to take me to chemo; and all those people who brought me meals, sent me cards, or prayed for me. They are ordinary people who serve an extraordinary God. Some times our job is to provide other people an opportunity to serve.