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The theme of A Calendar to Live By 2024 is to Write an Optimistic New Narrative. All 12 women who grace its pages have honest, inspiring stories written in their own words 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. February 2024.
Rachel Anderson – Ms. February | Diagnosed at 45 (2022)
Being told you have cancer is a shock. I spent the first month going through the motions, with my doctors and surgeons explaining what was happening. My initial diagnosis in September 2022 was DCIS of the right breast with the area of concern being 8cm long. I decided on a double mastectomy because of the size of the cancer area and to be symmetrical. After two months, my final diagnosis was infiltrating ductal carcinoma with lobular features, grade 2 and ductal carcinoma in situ, grade 3, ER+, PR+, HER- of my right breast. I decided to "go flat" and will remain flat, meaning no breast reconstruction. Thankfully, no radiation or chemotherapy was needed. After treatment, I found H4TG. Finding a community that understands what I had gone through and am still going through was life changing. I am not alone on this journey. Facing cancer has given me a new outlook on life and I do not want to waste any precious time. Everything has more meaning now. I want to live my life in a way that brings only joy and fulfillment. I have a phenomenal support system that has continued to love me through this journey. They give me strength and allow me to be vulnerable on tough days. That has made all the difference.
MY WORD: I AM ENGAGED.