Breast Cancer Survivor Stories

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From O. R. to P. R.
How Cancer Taught Me to Pursue My Dreams

by Fran Di Giacomo

I needed to write a book, and I had every opportunity an author would need to fail. As a professional artist and career cancer patient I’d been on chemotherapy for five years. I didn’t have a computer, fax machine, cell phone, or college degree. I just knew how to juggle multiple tumors, surgeries, chemotherapy sessions, art galleries, portrait commissions, and armies of medical staff, and how to enjoy life.

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I Once Spent Time on the Mountaintop

by Harriet Cox

When I was first diagnosed with breast cancer, I felt a mental numbness. Because I didn’t hurt, it was hard to believe that I had a life-threatening disease. As time wore on and treatment was scheduled, I began to believe it, and the numbness was replaced with a fear and despondency so strong that I struggled through each day.

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The Transformative Power of Cancer

by Meme Hieneman, PhD

My friends and family say I have changed since I was diagnosed with cancer, that now I am often unpredictable. And they are right. Cancer has caused me to question all that I thought I believed and wanted. My moods vary from peaceful to irritable, ecstatic to depressed. I am mediating an ongoing conflict between who I was before, who I am now, and who I ultimately hope to be.

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Reclaiming My Life after Metastatic Breast Cancer

by Jean Rymon

The first thing my oncologist stressed to me after I was diagnosed with breast cancer was the importance of my attitude and support network. To this day, I continue to live by that advice.

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I Had Cancer on My Wedding Day

by Crystal Brown-Tatum

As I flip through my wedding album, all of the details are a blur. I don’t notice the flowers or the detailed cake. What I cherish is the genuine smile on my face that reflects the love in my heart for so many things. Dazzling in my strapless wedding gown, little did I know I had breast cancer. Ironic isn’t it? I look so happy while cancer was dwelling inside me.

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When Chemo Brain Follows You Home

by Beth Leibson

We sat on comfy sofas talking about fainting. Passing out was frightening, embarrassing, and seemingly inevitable. Someone was listing the various places we, as a cancer support group, had lost consciousness: the workplace, the schoolyard, on the way home from chemotherapy.

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Battling Breast Cancer the SECOND Time Around

by Lisa Boccard

In 2003, I was diagnosed a second time with breast cancer. But this time, it was metastatic breast cancer. After eleven years of surviving Stage III breast cancer, I found myself once again fighting for my life. This time around is much different than the first time – I will be treated for this disease for the rest of my life.

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It’s Not So Bad - You Are a Survivor

by Patricia A. Bauer

The waiting room is comprised of one small loveseat in a brightly flowered pattern. Two straight-back chairs of an anemic maroon color join a small, generic lamp that claims a small space on the magazine-laden table. Although a magazine wall-holder clings to the wall, it is empty. A square mirror that is desperately crying out for a squirt of glass cleaner is suspended above the table. This completes my first vision of the waiting room I would soon come to know very well.

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