I turned 40 in January '22. Acutely aware that ageing is a privilege denied to so many, my own Dad died from Cancer aged 39. I was determined to live life to the fullest, with lots of trips and holidays planned. These plans came to an abrupt halt on June 28th '22 when my Consultant handed me a booklet entitled 'Understanding Breast Cancer' and informed me that I had Stage 2, Grade 3, Triple Positve Breast Cancer and it had spread to my lymph nodes. This came as a tremendous shock. A month later I had surgery to remove part of my breast and 23 lymph nodes. When I was informed I would be off work for at least 6 months, I naively wondered how I would occupy my time. Well 21 weeks of Chemotherapy, followed by 20 sessions of Radiotherapy and three weekly Herceptin has kept me busy...
Whilst undergoing Chemotherapy I went for Genetic Testing to see if there was a genetic reason for my cancer. I come from a small family with no history of Breast Cancer so I was very optimistic that there was no genetic reason behind my diagnosis. On February 10th this year I discovered that I do infact have the BRAC2 alteration! Again, this came as a shock. I need to learn to be more prepared!!!
So equipped with this new information I will now have two more preventative surgeries over the next 8 months.
Even as I write this I feel incredibly fortunate. I have benefited from the wonders of research and science, from incredible care, support and comfort. I'm extremely proud to be an Ambassador for 100k in 30 days. June will mark one year since being diagnosed. By taking part in this challenge for such a wonderful cause I can't think of a more fitting way to celebrate this milestone.
Breast cancer, when caught early, has the highest five-year net survival rate, of 85%, but is the
most common cancer in women in Ireland.
Early detection is key and in previous years we’ve focused on researching a cure, this year we are
going for put a section of funds to prevention, education and early detection programmes run by the
Marie Keating Foundation.
We will also use the funds in the following areas:
» Community Nursing Services
» Schools Cancer Awareness Programme
» Corporate Wellness Workshops
» Comfort Fund for patients going through Breast Cancer
» BRCA Peer To Peer Support Services
» Survive & Thrive Programmes
» Positive Living Meetings for Metastatic Diagnosis
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