Survivor Stories 2014:
1. How did you first find out you had cancer?
I suffered from very severe menopause symptoms for over 18 months. When visiting my endocrinologist in February 2014, I requested hormone replacement therapy. He told me that I was the perfect candidate, however I had to get my overdue mammogram and pap smear before he would prescribe anything. I was furious. Every mammogram I previously had led to a biopsy and “unnecessary” worry, so I decided that they were not for me. Desperation for relief from my menopause symptoms forced me to do as told. As predicted, my mammogram led to a biopsy once again. On March 27, 2014 I received my diagnosis.
2. How did you react when you heard the news?
It was very surreal. First of all, I begged the doctor to give me my results by phone. I do not get paid if I am not at work and that was my biggest worry. I was in the office with my co-worker and good friend. The doctors called but did not want to tell me over the phone. I persisted, stating the doctor promised. At that point, I knew. I cried a little, but really I was shocked; I felt fine physically.
3. What course of treatment were you prescribed?
My treatment included breast conservation, brachytherapy, and five years of drug therapy.
4. What most surprised you about your treatment?
The number of options I had was great. Being a candidate for brachytherapy and concluding radiation in five days instead of six weeks of daily treatment was incredible. I was able to get back to my “normal” life much quicker.
5. What would your advice be to anyone who’s just received a cancer diagnosis?
Breathe deep. There are so many amazing options for cancer treatment. Make informed decisions on what is right for you.
6. How long have you been cancer free?
I’ve been cancer free since June 2014
7. What lessons did you learn from the experience?
Cancer is not the scary disease it used to be. There are so many options and you have to make the choice that is right for you. Take advantage of all there is to offer.
8. If you could send one message to all the Good Enough Mothers out there – what would it be?
I have been a very stubborn woman for many years and I have ignored my health many times. Early detection makes such a big difference. Breast cancer really CAN HAPPEN TO YOU!
Sharon Logan is a 55-year-old breast cancer survivor from Somers Point, NJ. She enjoys working for a local orthodontist. Sharon’s life is centered around her family, including her four children ages 22 to 34, son-in-law and grandson. She works with The BC5 Project, a consortium of companies dedicated to educating women about their treatment options after a diagnosis of early stage breast cancer. One goal of the consortium is to make sure that brachytherapy is part of the conversation. To learn more about The BC5 Project please visit http://www.bc5project.com.