“An Inspiring Story about a Breast Cancer Survivor”
Just as she was finishing chemo, Tish came down with a severe case of pneumonia. Nevertheless, she rallied and now has a clean bill of health.
"I have learned not to take life for granted—relationships, family, or friends. I have a completely different outlook on life. First, I am grateful to have been given a second chance, and secondly I enjoy life so much more than I ever did. I actually think of this journey as a blessing."
I was diagnosed with cancer in June of 2006. I discovered my lump myself during a self-exam. I called the clinic and wanted it checked out. Doctor said it was probably a cyst, but wanted me to have more testing to make sure. I had a mammogram, then ultrasound, and then biopsy to find out that the lump was malignant. My husband and I were devastated to say the least, but the next reaction was to go forth and do whatever needed to be done and as soon as possible. I would cooperate with whatever was set before me. My husband said, "We are in this together," and that he would be by my side all the way. That was my comfort and then we put all our faith in God.
I started out with chemo to shrink the tumor and save the breast. The tumor disappeared. However, just before my last chemo treatment, I ended up in the hospital with pneumocystis carinii pneumonia. I was gravely ill and was put into an induced coma for five weeks to clear up the infection. After that length of time, I was debilitated from lying in a coma state for so long. I needed two months of therapy to be able to walk again. Then I had breast surgery. I did not have radiation; it was not recommended because of the damage to my lungs. During most of this time, I was unaware of what was going on, so lots of this journey is what doctors and people have told me. I recovered well after surgery and I am back to normal. I never felt bad or asked "Why me?" Just after accepting having cancer, it was time to move on. The doctors have given me a clean bill of health, which is wonderful news, and I am very grateful.
I have learned not to take life for granted—relationships, family, or friends. I have a completely different outlook on life. First, I am grateful to have been given a second chance, and secondly I enjoy life so much more than I ever did. I actually think of this journey as a blessing. Hard to imagine, but is true . I found out that I am a lot stronger than I ever thought possible, but it would have been difficult without my husband. He was my big support-group partner.
I believe whole-heartedly in cooperating with the medical teams. I would not be here today if not for them. I owe them my life. I do not know if I have any special advice for others, but take things as they come and put your faith in God and the medical team and do what needs to be done. You have two choices. Do whatever it takes to get well, or do nothing. It is a personal choice. Neither is wrong.