In May of 2008 I found lump in my breast. The diagnosis: Stage II HER2 positive breast cancer. And so I was introduced to the world of breast cancer: chemotherapy, the devastation of a mastectomy, more chemotherapy, radiotherapy, hormone treatment. I went to hell and back, but thirteen months later I was in remission. I was cured.
I plunged myself back into normal life – demanding career, plus all the demands of being a wife and mother. I thought I could do it all; I was invincible. I beat cancer, after all.
The threat of a recurrence looms over every cancer survivor; every check-up is a time of anxiety. But over time, as the check-ups become further apart, the threat becomes less real. So I was blindsided when an ultrasound picked up lesions in my liver in August.
Once again I am face to face with this enemy that threatens to steal my life.
The first time round it was easy to be positive. This second diagnosis is a big reality check, and there are days when I just do not know how I am going to get through it again. But I will, just one day at a time, because I am a Survivor. I will not give up. I am going to do everything in my power to fight this cancer. I have everything to live for. I have two little girls I am going to see grow up. I have a wonderful husband I want to grow old with. I have the love and support of my amazing family and friends.
I have a story to tell and a life to live and it sure does not end here. I am bigger than cancer and I am stronger than chemo…so bring it on.
Rika, from Johannesburg, South AfricaWhizzco