Sheldene’s thoughts on… Coming out stronger

12:15 14 October in Breast Cancer

I was talking to one of our patients who recently had a breast reconstruction after breast cancer. She said to me: “I don’t relate to this ‘survivor culture’ thing. I had cancer, I don’t have it anymore. I don’t want it to define me for the rest of my life.  That’s why I chose to have the reconstruction. To feel as whole as I felt before the disease.”

Again, I was struck by the power of the words spoken by someone who had been through a life-changing event and chose to be better after the experience. ‘Better’ as in ‘no longer ill’, but also ‘better’ as in ‘stronger, wiser and more resilient’ than before.

Breast cancer is not necessarily a death sentence, nor does it need to be disfiguring or leave you with emotional scars that you carry for the rest of your life.  The words of this wise woman reminded me that your illness does not define you.  Your strength and courage do.

Find the strength and courage to investigate that lump in your breast. Find the strength and courage to investigate all your options regarding breast cancer surgery and reconstruction. Find the strength and courage to not only survive breast cancer but to thrive.