What Breast Cancer Looks Like — Erica

I’m Erica, and my breast cancer looks like a 30-year-old wife and mother who could not have been more rocked than when I was diagnosed. It looks like a momma who now appreciates every single day with my kids and husband more than ever before. It looks like the desire to run marathons, and see that desire fulfilled with pride. My breast cancer looks like a restoring of my faith. And it looks like a strength I never knew I had. Erica is a blogger, too — check out her entire breast cancer story, and her thoughts on faith, family, and fitness. Then, show us what your breast cancer looks like. Please e-mail your shots to jackidonaldson@gmail.com. No blurry ones, and please include a little blurb,...

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What Breast Cancer Looks Like

Breast cancer looks like a lot of things, and a while back, I asked readers to submit photos that captured the essence of the disease. I got pics of hair loss, bald heads, scars, a wedding, purple flowers, sailboats, and I published them in a series called What Breast Cancer Looks Like. I think the little project turned out pretty well, and, at least for me, it was way inspiring. That’s why I want more — more images that tell stories of hope, strength, struggle, sickness, recovery, health, and more. You know why? Because I think most of us newly-diagnosed girls want to see right away what other survivors and their journeys look like. It’s how we prepare for our own travels with breast cancer. And so, I invite you to sort through what...

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Inspired By Fresh Starts

It’s not that I don’t want to write here more often, because I do. It’s just that I don’t have much to say anymore. Which is a really good thing, if you think about it. Six years after my breast cancer diagnosis, and I am running short on personal commentary. Definitely better than the alternative. Now, I’m not saying goodbye, and I promise to come back and document my feelings about breast cancer, spread hope and inspiration, and give away goodies from time to time, too. But there might be a good bit of silence around here, and that’s why I’m branching out by launching a new blog (today!). Square One is a non-disease related space (ahhhh!). Here’s the scoop: Fresh starts inspire me. And Square One is about me...

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What If It Were Me?

There’s this thing I do when I hear about someone newly diagnosed with breast cancer, someone who has experienced a recurrence, someone who has died from the disease. I compare. It can be a dangerous proposition, because I’ve yet to find someone with my exact same diagnosis, prognosis, treatment plan, side effects, and on, and on, and on — and until I do, it’s just plain silly to think I will ever follow in another woman’s footsteps. Still, I wondered when Carmen’s cancer came back, What if it were me? And I worried when Amy found out her cancer had spread to her lungs and brain, What if it were me? And when she died — What if it were me? The same thing happened when I heard about Christy — nearly 11 years after...

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Letter to Cancer a Memory of Christy

A friend of a friend lost her 41-year-old cousin to breast cancer on Sunday. She shared with me the following letter her cousin wrote three years ago, near the anniversary of her diagnosis. Dear Cancer, Wow … can you believe that it has been eight years since we first met? Some days it seems as if it was only yesterday. I have so many mixed feelings about our relationship, it is truly a love/ hate situation. I hate the fact that we ever had to meet but in some strange way I love that we can live together and I am grateful for some of the things that you have taught me over the years. I need to touch on the reasons for my hatred towards you, you have taken so many things from me. Whether you know it or not you have taken away a part of my daughter’s...

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He was not quite 4 years old when I was diagnosed with breast cancer, and today, he is 10. What a monster milestone. My first baby reaches double digits, and I am alive to see it.

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