Member Stories: Meet Patti

May 1, 2022

The theme of A Calendar to Live By 2022 is Perseverance. All 12 women who grace its pages have honest, inspiring stories of perseverance to share with readers -- as well as words of advice for other young women newly diagnosed with breast cancer. Read on to get to know more about Ms. May 2022.

Ms. February 2017   |   Diagnosed at 48 (2014), re-diagnosed at 53

Patti’s life has completely changed since her first breast cancer diagnosis in 2014. Back then, her diagnosis was stage 0 breast cancer. She was engaged and looked at her diagnosis as just a bump in the road. Fast forward nearly 5 years – her cancer returned, requiring more aggressive treatment that included chemo, a mastectomy and reconstruction. She developed heart failure from the chemo and had to have one implant removed. Those years were difficult enough; then, during that time, her marriage ended. These challenges could have knocked her down, but Patti persevered – and thrived! Since she first appeared in A Calendar to Live By, Patti made exercise part of her life and lost 50 pounds, and she is in a loving relationship. Throughout treatment, she continued her work as a middle school teacher with a smile and a positive attitude. Patti also volunteered as an H4TG facilitator to give back to the organization that helped support her through her journey.

“The strong family and friend support I had made all the difference. I understand my self-worth and that it’s okay to ask for help. I am not amazing; I am not a warrior. But I can face what life throws at me and I can survive!”

Patti has this advice for survivors: You may not have a great year ahead of you, but it will pass. Life will get back to normal and you will discover a new, more powerful you! Just keep a positive attitude and don’t be afraid to ask for help!

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