Keisha Uncovered: A Breast Recognition Project
Age When Diagnosed: 42
Breast Cancer Type: Triple Negative
I Am: Strength, Resiliency, Courage
I feel like I am at a crossroads so to speak. I can’t say honestly I don’t live in fear but with my treatment now in the rear-view mirror, sometimes I get scared and feel it will creep back in. Some days are easier, and I now have immense appreciation for life.
Before I was diagnosed, I didn’t have much of a connection to my breasts other than when I was younger and nursing my children, as it was important for me to provide them with nourishment. I don’t regret losing my breast. In turn, I have my life and I can enjoy watching my girls grow up and spend time with friends and family. I do miss feeling even. Right now, I feel lopsided because even if I wear a padded bra, it is still obvious that there’s an empty area. Lately, I’ve been wearing a sports bra, which helps minimize the look.
If you’ve been newly diagnosed, be easy on yourself. Nothing you did caused cancer. Don’t feel shy to ask questions because it will enable you to get the best care. Try to have a family member or friend attend appointments with you, especially during chemo when your brain may not be as sharp and physically you may feel like you’ve collided with a Mack truck. When you can, journal your feelings.
I feel this initiative is a step forward to bringing awareness and support for women of colour. I want to be part of the change and advocate for more research, data (including risk reduction) and more transparency within the oncology sector for women of colour as it has not been a priority for the healthcare sector.