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Breast Cancer Haven
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1 Year since I found a lump.

This time last year I found a lump at the age of 36. We had just moved house and area, and had 2 children age 2 and 6. Very soon I was told I had beat cancer. This was a huge shock. Mum had had it age 45 and now it had got me. I had 3 lymph nodes removed and it was in 1 and just starting to affect the 2nd, but not the 3rd. The cancer was a grade 2 HER2 negative. I had chemo 1st to enable genes tests to be done, and had 6 lots. I used a scalp cooler which meant that I just managed to hang on to enough hair, and didn't have to wear a wig (fabulous). After this I had surgery. I desperately wanted both breast removed and could do this as the genes tests weren't back. In October I had bilateral skin spring mastectomies with immediate tissue expander reconstruction. At the same time another 3 lymph nodes were taken and were all clear. Over the past few months my expanders have been expanded every 2 weeks, and, are now fully expanded. In May I will have the expanders removed and the proper implants fitted. I started on Tamoxifen in December and have just started with Zoladex injections this week to surprise my ovaries. I will take tamoxifen for 10 years and zoladex for 5 years.

I feel very lucky. All my treatment has been very successful and I have got through it all without too many problems. I am grateful that I have young children too. It has been hard at times as I haven't been able to rest with a 2 year old running round all day, but, it has also meant that I haven't been able to sit thinking about things all the time. I have remained positive throughout and believe this has played a massive part in things. I have also explained my treatment to my children the whole way through. We have laughed about things that have happened to me and they haven't cried or been worried once. I am so thankful for everything and if I have any advice it would be talk to people and stay positive. For anyone about to start on this journey, good luck. Xxx

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Forgot to put that genetics tests showed that I don't have any of the BRACA genes. It was just purely bad luck that my mum and I both got cancer young. X

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Lovely to hear such a positive story! I too have remained positive throughout my treatment. My daughter is 8 and like you I haven't hidden anything from her. If anything, my 17 year old has been more affected, he's a worrier. We have laughed over the wig and my new short hairstyle and my prosthesis has been the cause of much hilarity. My prognosis is excellent and now I've finished 12 weeks of chemo, I just have 3 weekly Herceptin injections and 10 years of tamoxifen which I've already started. I enjoy my life, I even enjoy going to the cancer unit, the staff are lovely and I always find someone to have a chat with. I absolutely believe a positive attitude makes such a difference. Have a lovely weekend Julie!x

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Thank you. Xxx

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Wow Julie that is such a positive story and lovely to read. Good health to you.

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Thank you. X

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