In her own words...A Breast Cancer Survivor's Story from Jen Nottrott
In Her Own Words...A Breast Cancer Survivor's Story
September of 2014. I remember I was substitute teaching for a teacher who was being treated for breast cancer. Ironically, I noticed a large lump in my right breast. I didn't think it could be of concern, as I had just had a mammogram four months prior.
I decided to get it checked out and was scheduled for an appointment on October 21, 2014. Nothing was the same after that appointment, as I was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer. My treatment plan was put together, and everything moved quickly. I had two cycles of chemotherapy, and in March of this year, I had a bilateral mastectomy. I also had a complete armpit dissection, as the cancer made its way into my lymph nodes. Since this past February, I've been undergoing a targeted treatment, similar to chemo, and will finish that in February of next year.
In July 2015, I began radiation treatment at UnityPoint Health Finley Hospital Wendt Regional Cancer Center - 36 treatments targeting my chest wall and scar line. The Wendt Center has been great, and I'm glad to be fighting this battle locally.
My next step on my journey to survivorship will include an estrogen blocker, which I will take for the next five years.
I, like everyone, hate cancer. Through this journey, however, I've been reminded of what I'm grateful for in life. I am especially grateful for the advances made in breast cancer treatment and places like the Wendt Center. I'm glad everyone likes breasts so much! We still have a lot to learn, but we are on the right track. Cancer has taught me to let little troubles go and to appreciate all the wonderful blessings in life, especially my beautiful family and friends.