Turning Adversity Into Opportunity
My husband Jaryd and I spent the last four years creating our family. I was so excited to return to life without being pregnant after having three children under the age of 4. I was at the very end of my maternity leave and had gone for a mammogram on a Thursday, knowing that I was to return to work on Monday. In just a few days, my world turned upside down as I was unexpectedly diagnosed with triple positive breast cancer. I had no history of breast cancer in my family and I was not a carrier of any genetic mutation that increased my risk. I was immediately connected to a doctor who specialized in Pregnancy Associated Breast Cancer (PABC); I had never heard of such a thing.
Right before my chemo started, a friend referred me to Sharsheret, and I received a package that included a beautiful pillow to help prop up my arm after my scheduled mastectomy, toys and crafts for my children and parenting resources. My grandmother came to visit and together we attended a highly informative Sharsheret genetics panel discussion. We left feeling empowered to get involved, and I knew I needed to share my story through Sharsheret to help other women.
Once I started to feel more like myself, I started planning an educational outreach event for young professionals in Dallas. The night was a huge success with close to 200 women and men participating on Zoom. I am so grateful to be a member of Sharsheret’s Young Professional Committee (YPC) Board, and for giving me a forum through which to help other women.
I was very lucky, as my husband and mother-in-law are both doctors, so I had the A-Team getting me through cancer. Once I got through treatment I realized that becoming involved with Sharsheret was the best way to pay it forward. Women can turn to me for advice on family planning (freezing embryos and fertility concerns), breast cancer screenings, or on juggling breast cancer while parenting three young kids. I hope to continue supporting Sharsheret as Sharsheret continues to support me.