Gloria Nelson was diagnosed with breast cancer on 8th October 2018. She is also a campaign ambassador for Cancer Research, UK. She says, “awareness is a must. People should talk out loud about it. Only awareness can push out the stigma.”
It all started with a pain
It started with joint pain. Initially I took it very casually. But after a few days, I felt tired all the time. I was sweating, shoulder pain, and back pain. I was taking all these symptoms very casually. Because these symptoms were similar to menopause. Then in September 2018, I noticed a lump in my breast. Immediately I went to the doctor. Even the doctor took it very casually and prescribed it for a blood test. That test report also came negative. On further tests, it was diagnosed as breast cancer. Later the doctor prescribed a biopsy to confirm the disease.
Diagnosis came as shock to me
“The news threw me for a loop.The first thing that came to my mind after the diagnosis is- I am going to die. But my doctor counselled me very well. She told me that this is a curable disease. The only thing is you will have to stay in the hospital for a while. As a part of treatment lumpectomy, spectomy, mastectomy and breast implant surgery were performed. I had been given medicine for a long time. Post surgery and chemotherapy, I was given medicines that helped me to gain strength.
Support system plays an important role in faster recovery. When I had surgery, my mother had come to support me for fifteen days. That was a great time for me. In the immediate aftermath of the diagnosis, and throughout the entire treatment period, the support of Hospital staff, nurses and support group was praiseworthy. It helped me regain a sense of normalcy, maintain emotional stability, and improve my chances of ensuring a positive clinical outcome.Having a strong support system helped me with positive benefits, such as higher levels of well-being, better coping skills, and a longer and healthier life.
Importance of self examination
A breast self-exam is very much important for early diagnosis and treatment. It is important to create awareness about it. The best time to do a monthly self-breast exam is about 3 to 5 days after your period starts. Do it at the same time every month. Your breasts are not as tender or lumpy at this time in your monthly cycle. If you have gone through menopause, do your exam on the same day every month.
Life after cancer
Cancer has also changed me into someone who always appreciates life. I am grateful for the little things that shape me into the person that I will eventually become. I feel empowered now. I am no longer worried. I was diagnosed in 2018 and I must confess that till 2021 I had a fear of reoccurance.Now it has gone completely. It was tough for me to fight hard as a breast cancer patient and after ensuring that I faced every challenge with a great heart, it all turned out great for me. Finally, I am a breast cancer survivor. I am sharing my experience to help other people who have been diagnosed with the same condition. My aim is to let people know that there is hope in life and they can overcome any hurdle they come across in their path towards recovery.
There is no doubt that the news of your diagnosis will be shocking at first but do not lose hope because you are not alone on this journey! You have family members and friends who will support you throughout your treatment process by providing moral support every step of the way which will eventually help you recover faster than expected without feeling depressed or anxious about your future prospects.
Message for others
My story is not an isolated case; thousands of people face this disease every year. But the good news is that there are some remedies that can help treat and prevent breast cancer. I am happy to say that today I am a breast cancer survivor and am back to living an active life. But this journey wasn’t easy, especially at the beginning when everything felt like a struggle.
So once you are survived. Feel that you are a lucky person. Do what you like. Enjoy each day of your life.