Name: JeriLynn Mayeur
Occupation: Surgical RN
Age when diagnosed with breast cancer: 31
Breast cancer type: HR+PR+ IDC
Breast cancer stage: Stage 2
Treatment: 4 rounds AC chemo, 12 rounds of Taxol chemo, just completed right mastectomy with expander placement, will start radiation soon, then left mastectomy with bilateral DIEP Flap reconstruction surgery
Tell us a fun fact about yourself that has nothing to do with cancer:
I have been a nurse in the OR for 7+ years now!
What’s your go-to pick-me-up song?
“I Wanna Dance With Somebody” by Whitney Houston
How did you discover your breast cancer?
I was having blood in my stools, so I had a colonoscopy in June 2020. It was then we learned I had colon cancer, and had to have a sigmoid colectomy in July 7, 2020. Two days later, while still recovering in the hospital, something told me to rub my chest and I rubbed over something that felt like a small ping pong ball on top of my breast. After having tests for this palpable mass, I was diagnosed with stage 2 invasive ductal carcinoma in August 2020, six weeks after my colon cancer diagnosis.
What went through your head when you received your diagnosis?
“What in the 2020 is going on?!”
What’s the craziest thing someone said to you after being diagnosed?
“At least you’ll get new boobs after all of this….”
Who has been your biggest source of support throughout?
I have built myself a big support system from family, friends, and co-workers, and I could not be any more blessed.
What is the most difficult part of being a young woman with breast cancer?
Losing my eyebrows and eyelashes. Losing my hair wasn’t that difficult for me, but when I lost all my eyebrows and eyelashes, I felt like a baked potato some days.
What’s something unexpected you learned about yourself as a result of having breast cancer?
How strong I am! I never thought I could go through everything I did. I was able to keep working in the OR during chemo, and plan to still work through radiation. I felt like keeping busy has helped me recover a little better each round.
What words of wisdom would you pass on to another young person just diagnosed with breast cancer?
Take life day by day, and learn to appreciate WHO is in your life versus WHAT material things are in your life.
If you or someone you know is a young woman with breast cancer looking for a community that relates and connects with your struggle, the Rethink Young Women’s Network might be right for you. For more information, click here.