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Nothing can prepare you to hear that you have cancer

Nothing can prepare you to hear that you have cancer

I was first diagnosed with DCIS, IDC and LCIS (Stage 1) at the age of 49. I have a family history and always had it in the back of my mind that I would probably be diagnosed but when I was it was a shock.

Nothing can prepare you to hear that you have cancer.

After the initial shock, I decided that I was strong and could do this. I am woman, hear me roar! So I went through a surgical procedure to remove the cancer in my left breast, excisional biopsy on my right to remove the atypical cells and a sentinel lymph node biopsy to check the left side. My nodes were clear of cancer but the biopsy on the right was positive for cancer (ICS) and did not have clean margins.

So I am preparing for a double mastectomy with reconstruction and slnb on the right. I still believe that "I got this" but it is hard at times. I find that if I do not keep busy that my mind drifts to the unthinkable and I start to cry.

I question my decisions but trust my Dr. There are so many emotions that I wasn't prepared for but I am taking it one day at a time. My journey is just beginning and I am trying to adjust to the new normal.

My friends and family have been great in their support. I am a very lucky girl to have a great support system. I feel that a strong support system and a positive attitude is key to a successful outcome. I am learning everything I can about my diagnosis and researching so I can be informed to make the best decision for me.

It is definitely overwhelming but I am stubborn enough to beat this to become a survivor. Thank you for allowing me to share my story. It is therapeutic for me to talk about it. And I hope my story can help, even if just one person. Oh yeah, and don't forget to laugh.

Submitted by Karen Dunn

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