Bonnie Brooks: Metastatic Breast Cancer Survivor
Metastatic breast cancer is when cancer cells spread to other parts of the body from the breast. This is usually called stage 3 or 4 of breast cancer. Many believe that this type of diagnosis is a death sentence, and there is nothing you can do to recover. One particular survivor, Bonnie Brooks, shows how that is just not true.
On September 11th, 2008, Bonnie was diagnosed with stage 3 metastatic breast cancer. According to her account, she found out that her cancer was metastatic, inflammatory, and that they would have to cut off her breast all within one week of being diagnosed. Bonnie even states that she didn't feel sick, and could not believe that she was actually dying. Her oncologist told her that she could not guarantee that Bonnie's life could even be saved.
Bonnie's treatment involved chemotherapy and extensive surgery, but she says that she was willing to do anything to reduce the chance of the breast cancer getting worse. In her mind, fighting breast cancer was like fighting a war.
One interesting tidbit of Bonnie's story is her tip to record all conversations with your doctor, as hearing bad news can cause the mind to wander off and miss important information. She also said this made it easier to explain what was going on to her family, as she didn't have to try and remember what the doctor said. Lastly, she makes it clear that breast cancer is not something that you should face alone. Whether it be through your family, friends, or a support group, you need to find others who are willing to help you through the difficulties surrounding a breast cancer diagnosis.
Four years after being diagnosed, Bonnie was still alive and cancer free. She hopes that her story will inspire other patients to seek support when going through treatments. See more of her story here.