breast-cancer-survivor

My breast cancer journey started when I was 32 and was diagnosed on January 30th, 2017. I suspected something wasn’t right when I found a lump on my breast as I was getting ready to take a shower. My inner voice told me to do a self-exam before and luckily I did. The following week I was diagnosed with breast cancer.

I am a mom of two little girls, who I love dearly and the hardest part of hearing the words ‘you have cancer‘, is feeling unsure that I would be around to my daughters grow up. But I knew I would have to remain strong for them! 

As I began to prepare for my journey, I made sure to change some areas in my lifestyle by really listening to my body. That meant resting when I felt tired and maintaining a positive attitude throughout the entire journey. I felt as though being negative takes too much energy and at a time when your energy is precious, I didn’t want to waste it.

I have received a tremendous amount of support from my family and friends but was also something I struggled with. In the beginning, I hate allowing people to help me because I have always been very strong and independent and relying on other people made me think of myself as weak. Eventually, though, I have learned this is not true…people who really love you want to help but often do not know how. It’s difficult to go from being healthy to sick seemingly overnight. But I began to embrace the help from those who were willing to assist me.

Through this journey, I’ve experienced a double mastectomy, radiation, and chemotherapy, a whirlwind of tests, several doctors visits, and reconstruction. While undergoing all of this, I worked the entire time. This by far has not been easy or a walk in the park, but I was committed to not allowing breast cancer to slow me down. I wanted my daughters to be able to look and me and see how I handled every obstacle that came my way. If I could ever offer any advice, it would be to take things one day at a time and focus on the now. There is light at the end of every dark tunnel!

For more inspiring stories like Ashley’s visit our Survivor Stories, or share your own!