45, diagnosed at 43
No family history, no known genetic mutation
CLEVER. Our theme for A Calendar to Live By 2021, INSPIRED, shares the word that resonates most with each of our calendar ambassadors and reflects the woman she has become since her cancer journey began. Marjorie's word is CLEVER. Here is her story.
Marjorie went to her annual exam, where her doctor felt a lump on her breast. A mammogram led to a biopsy of several spots that led to a stage 2 breast cancer diagnosis. Her treatment started with chemo, which was difficult on her body and left her 30 pounds lighter and in the hospital to help manage her symptoms. A modified radical mastectomy and reconstruction followed, and then, finally, radiation. Her breast cancer journey has dramatically impacted her life and outlook. Making money, she’s an education policy analyst, isn’t as important to her now; she is focused on living her best life and experiencing new things. She and her boyfriend started dating only a few months before her diagnosis, but he stuck by her side and they were married in May 2020. “I'm not great at trusting people, but I had to trust him,” she recalls. “I had to be vulnerable in front of him because I was just so sick. The two of us can get through anything because we've made it through this.” The word clever resonates with her. “Clever is about smarts and wit and thinking on my feet. Clever is unexpected and funny and warm. I strive to be clever, whenever I can.”
MORE TO ADD: "The best thing I received during my breast cancer treatment was the health guide that came inside the Here for the Girls calendar. It was full of answers to questions I hadn't even thought to ask. When I found H4TG, I was looking for a group that could tell me what I was feeling and thinking was normal and that I could get through breast cancer. I was looking for people who could tell me what to expect and how to prepare and that they had made it through and so can I. I was looking for a sisterhood of younger breast cancer survivors who could help me understand what it means to be, first, a cancer patient, and then a survivor."