I completed my treatment on December 2nd, 2020, which included a double mastectomy and 15 fractions of radiation. The surgery went very well, and I had a speedy recovery with no issues. Radiation was a breeze. The cancer ended up being much more advanced than what showed on imaging. I was shocked when I saw my post-surgical pathology report. What I thought was a large 5 cm tumour, ended up being an extra-large 12cm tumour, and 13 out of the 26 lymph nodes that were removed from me were cancerous. This resulted in a stage 3c diagnosis. It was very discouraging at the time, but I now remind myself that my very talented surgeon, Dr. Alexandra Easson got clear margins.
I have been told that the cancer has a very high chance of returning, which instills a great deal of fear in me, and that has been my biggest challenge thus far. I try to push the scary thoughts aside and have trust that my doctors are throwing everything at this disease and have hope that my treatments are working.
I have become very in tune with my body and on many occasions have experienced the profound effects that anxiety has on my body. Deep breathing, positive thinking, exercising, restful sleep, happiness and proper nutrition are some of the things that keep me balanced. I enjoy going out for long walks and listening to audio books after my children have gone to bed. It is a great way for me to wind down at the end of the day and reset myself.
Deep breathing, positive thinking, exercising, restful sleep, happiness and proper nutrition are some of the things that keep me balanced.
When I am feeling down, I take a few minutes and read a success story of a breast cancer survivor. Dr. Philippe Bedard and his team continue to be very supportive and always take the time to listen to what I am feeling and carefully assess me. I always leave feeling that a huge weight has been lifted off my shoulders. I am forever grateful for the kindness and compassion he and his team have shown me this past year.
Despite the Covid-19 pandemic, life is beginning to feel normal again. I will be returning to work soon, which will be a big adjustment, but I am ready and looking forward to the adult time. My family and friends continue to be incredibly supportive. There is always a shoulder to lean on and someone to help me stay calm when I feel a new tingle or pain in my body. I am so thankful to have such a wonderful village by my side and a top-notch health care team at PMCC.