Name: Kelly Costa
Occupation: Expediter at Pollard Windows Inc.
Age when diagnosed with breast cancer: 34
Breast cancer type: Invasive Ductal Carcinoma
Breast cancer stage: 2 B
Treatment: 8 cycles of chemotherapy over 4 month period (4 treatments of AC & 4 paclitaxel) which was completed Jan 6, 2017 YAY!!! Had bilateral mastectomy Feb 1st and radiation TBD.
Tell us a fun fact about yourself that has nothing to do with cancer
I love dancing and listening to latin music and I hardly understand the language. I’m of Portuguese decent so I don’t really think there’s a connection there. The dancing is done when I’m alone though or in front of my kids.
What’s your go-to pick-me-up song?
Vaiven – Daddy Yankee
How did you discover your breast cancer?
I found the lump when I was taking a shower. Ran the bath sponge over the side of my right breast and felt it. Wasn’t a major lump, not that it was sticking out or anything but would just feel it when I touched that spot. Let it go for a few weeks, never thought anything of it just thought maybe I had pulled something from lifting at work. I’d say it was a month after when I decided to go to the doctor.
What went through your head when you received your diagnosis?
My first thought was “I don’t want to die” to “I can’t go anywhere, I HAVE to see my kids grow up” and I knew my strength would get me through.
What’s the craziest thing someone said to you after being diagnosed with breast cancer?
“It’s only breast cancer, you can’t die from breast cancer. You’re lucky it wasn’t somewhere else like your brain, stomach, etc..”
Who or what is/was your biggest source of support throughout your experience with cancer?
My mom and my husband. My relationship grew stronger with my mom. We became closer then ever and my husband has been my rock through this too. He sometimes would struggle finding the right words to say but he always been here for me.
What is/was the most difficult part of being a young woman with breast cancer?
It threw me off my steady road of routine. Work, being a mom, taking care of the kids, household.. just being in control and having it all in order. That was our normal life and I’ve had to re route it. I’m sure we will get back on a steady road again. We will just have to find a new one.
What’s something unexpected you learned about yourself as a result of having breast cancer?
How strong and mentally determined I am. Never knew I had that much will power until I came face to face with breast cancer. It honestly surprised me.
In one sentence, what words of wisdom would you pass on to another young woman who has just been diagnosed with breast cancer?
You must do the thing you think you cannot do.
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