am 65 years old and a native New Havener.
I moved to Washington, DC to attend Howard University and remained there after graduation. I’ve worked as a labor and delivery nurse for the past 35 years. I have
three children and one grandchild. I’ve worked two-to-three jobs throughout my career. Sadly, I admit that I let life get the
better of me and missed several routine mammograms.
In March 2019, I went in for a routine mammogram. I have dense breasts so when I was called back in for a sonogram, I wasn’t
worried. After the sonogram, I was called back for a series of biopsies, which again didn’t worry me. When I received the call that
I had cancer, I was numb. Most of our family carry the BRCA gene, but I don’t have it. I was diagnosed with invasive lobular carcinoma.
I underwent a bilateral mastectomy, five months of chemotherapy, six weeks of radiation and reconstruction with a DIEP flap, which uses your own fat to make new breasts.
During my treatment I developed neuropathy in my hands and feet and lymphedema in my right arm. I am taking medication which I will
be on for 10 years. I try to see the best in any situation that I am in. Going through this journey has enabled me to
become an advocate for encouraging women to schedule and go to yearly mammograms. It’s so important to take care of ourselves and not to get
so absorbed in the activities of daily living that we become neglectful of our own health. I also made a VLOG while I was in treatment. I
thought that it might help others who are going through the breast cancer journey.