Value … Poems from Wildfire

– Art by Masha Chernova

Melissa Allbritten. Executive assistant, part-time student, mom. Diagnosed at 40. Stage I, ER+, PR+, then Stage IV. In December 2016 I was diagnosed with IDC of 1cm in my right breast, and DCIS in my left. In March 2017 we realized it was all over my bones, so I was probably Stage IV from the beginning. I am busy working full- time, going to school part-time, and raising 2 really awesome kids. I live in North Texas with my husband, kids and cats. I spend most of my free time reading, playing games and watching Brendan Fraser movies. I love to laugh and I love people, especially the unusual ones. Stay positive, and don’t let the fear of tomorrow steal your joy today.

Editor’s Note: This piece has been republished with permission from WILDFIRE Magazine, the “Mental Health” issue (Vol 3, No 2, Copyright (c) April 2018 by Wildfire Community LLC). More information available at

Every month, Rethink will be sharing powerful stories and poetry from WILDFIRE Magazine. Use code RETHINK for 10% off anything in the WILDFIRE Shop.

WILDFIRE Magazine is the only magazine for young women survivors and fighters of breast cancer under 45 years old. Headquartered in Santa Cruz, California, WILDFIRE is a beautiful, story-based bi-monthly magazine published on different themes relevant to young women survivors, from stage 0 to stage IV. Beautiful and ad-free! Visit for more info.

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