AND THE WINNER IS ... SANDY B.!
Harry's is pleased to announce to you that the winner of the Beach Cruiser Giveaway is Sandy B., a breast cancer survivor herself!
Harry's would like to thank each and every one of you who contributed to the success of this fundraiser/raffle! We raised nearly $1900 for the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer event, and all proceeds went to the American Cancer Society!
We all were very happy when we found out that the winner of our Harry's Beach Cruiser Giveaway was an actual Breast Cancer Survivor! It couldn't have happened to a more excited and grateful person!
Sandy was kind enough to share her story with us in order to share with all of you and raise more awareness. Below is Sandy's story in her own words.
SANDY'S STORYMy name is Sandy and I am the very proud winner of the pink beach cruiser that was raffled off last month to promote breast cancer awareness. Being a three year breast cancer survivor myself, I was elated to hear I had actually WON the bike, but hearing that the raffle raised almost $1,900 for the American Cancer Society’s “Making Strides Against Breast Cancer” event was even more exciting!
When I was diagnosed with invasive lobular breast cancer three years ago I knew nothing about this horrible disease that affects 1 in 8 women. I believed that cancer happens to others…not me! Wow, was I given a wakeup call when I felt a lump in my left breast while showering one morning! I knew immediately something was not right, and made an appointment to have it checked out by my primary care doctor. During his examination, he confidently told me “the lump you feel is nothing, but if you insist, I will send you to the breast center for a diagnostic mammogram.”
My gut instinct told me to make the appointment at the CMH Breast Center, and a few days later I was told, again… “The lump you feel is nothing” by two radiologists who looked at the mammogram images. However, this time, one radiologist saw “something suspicious” about two inches away from the lump I felt and ordered a biopsy within a few days.
One week later I received the news that I indeed had “invasive lobular breast cancer.” I was immediately referred to a surgical oncologist who explained to me what my options were, and confidently told me “the lump you feel is nothing.” After careful research regarding lobular breast cancer, and learning that this type of breast cancer would most likely occur in my right breast, I made the difficult decision to have a bilateral mastectomy with immediate reconstruction. This decision ended up saving my life, because when the pathology came back on my breast tissue after my first surgery July 18, 2012, it was determined that the original lump I felt in the shower WAS in fact breast cancer, and the FOUR doctors who told me it was “nothing” were wrong.
I endured five major surgeries over the last three years and am happy to say I am currently cancer free and healthy. I have taken an anticancer drug called Tamoxifen every day for three years to keep my cancer from coming back somewhere else in my body. Studies have indicated that if breast cancer recurs, it will happen within the first five years, so I have two more years taking Tamoxifen before I am “out of the woods.”
I could go on and on about the endless doctor appointments, the sudden onset of hypochondria and the financial burden a cancer diagnosis can place on a person, but I won’t burden you with those things.
In closing, I would like to say that breast cancer does not discriminate based on age, ethnicity or even gender. My advice is to be your own advocate, your own doctor, and never, never take no for an answer if you truly feel something is wrong. I didn’t and it saved my life.
So ladies…get your mammogram! Educate yourself about breast cancer because it truly is an epidemic. Early detection saves lives, and I am living proof of that. Thank you again for listening to my story, and thank you Harry’s for your contribution to promoting awareness!
~ Sandy B.