The Beginning: “We are dealing with Breast Cancer.”

On August 12, 2011, I heard those six words while sitting half-naked in an exam room at St. Barnabas Hospital – “We are dealing with Breast Cancer.”  Just like that, my doctor didn’t beat around the bush or try to avoid the inevitable. She knew from one look at my ultrasound that it was cancer.  Speechless, my mother and I stared at each other for a few seconds and then all I could come up with to console her was, “Don’t worry, mom, you are going to die before me.” I’m not sure if she found comfort in that, but we both laughed and I knew that finding humor was the only way to get through this.

It’s funny how differently people take the “It’s Breast Cancer” news. The first call I made was to Steve – my boyfriend, domestic partner, soul mate. My voice cracked (I try not to cry in front of him) and in his calmest voice he says, “OK, what’s the next move.” I gained strength right then in there because I knew he was the perfect person to take this journey with me. He is a rock. My rock. Pure and simple.  Quite differently, my dad cried uncontrollably and rushed to the hospital. They say girls marry men like their father, but that’s not true in my case. Steve and my dad are polar opposites, but both personalities create balance in my life. What one doesn’t give me, the other does.

Fast forward 3 months and I sit here today with no boobs, pimples all over my face from chemo and an itchy scalp because I’m days from losing my hair. I’d be lying if I said it’s been tough. Yup, you read that right. Sure, it hasn’t been the best 3 months of my life, but I’ve seen people go through worse and I refuse to feel sorry for myself. 

This is my journey about strength, humor and the fight to come out stronger on the other side.

9 thoughts on “The Beginning: “We are dealing with Breast Cancer.””

  1. S. Molinaro said:

    Some people “rock the mike”, others “rock those heels”, you get the point – but, you, “rock life” and through this journey so, will you rock the shit out of cancer, fight like there’s no end and come up for air – head above water – gas mask off – screaming at the top of those lungs (fairly smaller “lungs” admittingly) hee hee – I KICKED CANCER’S ASS! xoxo

  2. Cancer can’t take your sense of humor, nor can it take the love that surrounds you. If you stay close to positive people in your life I believe you can get through anything. Will there be days that seem so tough you wonder if you can handle it? Oh YES, there will be, but when you have people in your life that make you laugh and always see the brighter side, you get through those horrible days. With every day you fight, you get stronger and stronger. Never feel that you cannot give in for a little while with a friend and shed tears, for they are a part of healing as well. Just know that getting cancer has not ruined your life, it has just changed it, it now makes you a stronger person!

  3. Thank you for not writing about our conversation!! Lmao! I’m such a sap!

  4. Keresten chen said:

    You are a inspiration

  5. Midge Valuet said:

    I was on FB today reading Amy’s messege. I was so glad she put the link to your blog. I know it has been years since we have seen each other, but you, your mom & your dad will always be in my heart as part of my family. I am so very impressed with how very strong you are and how you are able to keep your sense of humor. You are an amazing young woman. It is wonderful that you have so many great people fighting right beside you. You and your family are in my prayers daily and I pray every day that you will have the strength and faith to get through this. Please give my love to your mom & dad. sent with love.

    • Thanks Midge. I appreciate the kinds words. I hope you keep reading my blog – I will be posting daily.

      • Midge Valuet said:

        I definitely will. I totally agree that you need some music for the infusion room. Music is one of the best things for the soul. Those other people need some joy in their lives even though you are all going through a horrible experience. You will definitely bring them that joy.

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