"I BELIEVE IN PINK! I believe that laughing is the best calorie burner. I believe in kissing, kissing a lot. I believe in being strong when everything seems to be going wrong. I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day and I believe in miracles."— Audrey Hepburn

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Every night, friends. You have done what you could. Let it go.

“Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day. You shall begin it serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson


Saturday, October 8, 2011

It's Pink Saturday! Again...

 But this one is a special one, as in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, I have decided to finally share my story...or maybe I should rephrase that...for as many, or at least some of you, know, I have surely shared my story before, just not here. On my Blog...I am not really sure why. It is certainly no secret that I am a Breast cancer Survivor of Stage II Invasive Triple negative to be exact, and it will be 17 years in January, since the fateful day of diagnosis...But I get ahead of myself...
In fact I was a guest blogger on another blog for just this topic and here is the link to that fun blog
Great name huh?

You don't have to go there, I am going to tell it here, but it would be nice and I think you will like it over there...
Kim is a Komen  AIS Steering Committee Member,Survivor chair MD SGK RFTC. 
That is the caption she used for my picture...it is from my email signature...
Me from a couple of years ago...I am thinner now...Yay!
Without further ado...
Kim Wright: My Story

It was New Years Eve 1994...

I got in the shower thinking about the evening ahead. As I did my routine I felt something in my right breast near my armpit. It was not small and it was very solid. I was stunned. I couldn't believe it. I later showed my husband and we worried. Of course, being the holiday nothing could be done, so we went on with our plans.

On Monday when I got back to work (I worked in a hospital as an Embryologist), I waited anxiously for the GYN office to open and I placed the call. She fit me right in. The doctor didn't like what she was feeling so she sent me for a mammogram. I had just turned 36 so it was to be my first. She casually asked me if there was any chance I could be pregnant and I said there could be so she ordered an HCG just to be safe before the mammogram. Imagine my shock when the test indicated that I was indeed pregnant! I was excited. I just wanted to be done with the uncertainty and get on with this new and welcome pregnancy.

As the doctor performed the ultrasound, he explained that he did not like what he saw and that I would need to have a biopsy. The biopsy was scheduled as a core biopsy with ultrasound and it was scheduled for that Friday. Friday came and I went in. At this point we had told no one. The core biopsy did not go well. They also did not like what they saw and felt.

I was sent home to wait. The pathologist on call that weekend was a friend I had worked with in the main lab for years. He came in on the weekend for this reading and later realized that he was devastated at what he knew to be invasive stage II breast cancer. He begged my physician not to tell me over the phone, but wait until Monday and tell me in person. She did tell me that it would need to come out. Through all of this, my focus was the baby! Just do it and let me go on…

Monday I went to her office and my life was to be forever and profoundly changed... The doctor proceeded to explain to me that I had invasive breast cancer and it needed to come out. I was calm. I asked what came next. It was explained to me that I would need to have surgery and probably treatment. She would be sending me to a good surgeon. I asked then about the baby and she just looked at me for a minute and said I probably would not be able to continue the pregnancy. That was the point at which I lost it. I was inconsolable.

It got to a point where I was ready to do away with Fridays. I had a lumpectomy on Friday to determine if the cancer was invasive. If not, then keep the baby and have a mastectomy. If so, then go back for an axillary node dissection and a D&C. Another Friday The call came and I could hear it in his voice. The following Friday, I once again was scheduled to have surgery.

I was careful to not let my young daughter see me with out anything on my bald head. I didn't want to scare her. Here, I must tell one of my most poignant memories of that time. One night, as I was kneeling next to my daughter’s bed, she asked to see, so I took off the turban I was wearing. She looked at my head and without a word she leaned forward and pulled my head down to her and kissed the top of my head. I heard my husband sniffle behind me. Then she told me I could put the hat back on. I just laughed.

The rest, as they say, is history. I am a very active advocate. I took a scientific course made for advocates in 1996 and from there it took off. I am an advocate reviewer of grants for Susan G. Komen for the cure and other organizations and I have received a few awards. I am still an Embryologist by trade, but breast cancer advocacy is my life’s work! My now 19-year-old daughter works beside me and so does my husband. My signature on my email goes like this. "We will find a cure. Until there's a cure, there's Komen for the Cure!"

Diagnosed in early 1995, I am now a 16.5-year survivor and going strong...

I am a walking success story and I love to share that story with others. I can honestly say that breast cancer has changed the course of my life. I have met wonderful people and had many opportunities that I never would have had if it weren't for that fateful New Year's Eve of 1994.

The things that I have been privileged to be involved with and the people I have met and become friends with as a result of that fateful New Years Eve have enriched my life to the nth degree. It has culminated with me being named the Chair for the 2008,2009 Susan G Komen for the Cure Maryland Race for the Cure. Named the largest fundraiser in Maryland with over 34,000 participants last year and grossing over 3 million (75% of which stays here in Maryland to fund local initiatives).

I have spoken as part of a panel on advocacy at the Komen for the Cure mission conference and as the survivor chair for the Maryland race activities I was largely responsible for the Maryland affiliate being awarded the $10,000 dollar Ford Warrior in Pink prize in 2006. I am a wonderful example of a warrior in pink.  

At this point I am the current Survivor committee chair for the MD RFTC and a member of the Susan G Komen for the Cure Advocates in Science Steering Committee. At the same time I represent the advocate voice on the Translational Breast cancer Consortium for Johns Hopkins and the JHH SPORE also.

So, there you have it...My story...Sometime during July while I was sick and away from blogging I passed my bloggy anniversary.
Another milestone...

I am posting here a link to another blog...some say there is too much pink in the world...If there is one group that I know does not agree with that, it is this one...So please check this out...

Please visit Beverly at 
HowSweetThesound for more PINK 
and 


and



                                  
       I will leave you with this...






Please!!!

                                   

                                          

13 comments:

  1. And I'm soooooooo glad you are here Kim.
    xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxo

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  2. Following you back! liked your networked blog and FB page too!
    Pam from mbs

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  3. What an inspiration you are :)
    Soo happy your a survivor!......
    Have a happy pinky pink Saturday!!!

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  4. Great story Miss Kim. Thanks for sharing it and all the hard work you do for the reat of us.

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  5. You are one the fortunate and blessed ladies. Thank you for sharing this side of your life.

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  6. Very happy to see you have survived this

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  7. Kim,
    I am so glad that you shared your story!
    Early detection is the key to survival with any cancer and not just breast cancer. Almost 17 years!! Good for you!
    I too am a cancer survivor and I hope to be hitting my 5th year cancer free this November.
    I had a tumor in my right ureter, the tube that connects the kidney with the bladder. It is very rare and usually by the time one exhibits S&S, it has invaded the bladder or the kidney.
    I had pain from what I thought was a kidney stone. Luckily for me, the tumor was right where the kidney connected with the ureter and even though it was small, it caused an obstruction. Hence, the pain. I was able to have it lasered out and it was fully encapsulated . I did not need chemo or radiation. I had to go for cystoscopes x4 the first year then x 2 the second year and then yearly. In Nov., it will be my 5th year and hopefully, my last cystoscope.
    You have a different mind set once the word cancer is applied to you, don't you? You look at things differently.
    Thanks so much for your visit!!
    Thanks for sharing your story!

    Hugs,
    Debbie

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  8. I thank God for your life. Is not easy to be a cancer survivor. Thanks for stopping by my blog and following. Following back and i look forward being part of your blog.

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  9. You have a very inspirational story of life!...stopping by from MBS, just grabbed your button and am following you on networked blog...would love you to follow back too and check out my site at http://cutecoconut.com :)

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  10. Dear Kim, Thank you so much for sharing your amazing story. I am so thankful you are a survivor. My sister and her daughter are cancer survivors. Your story is inspiring to us and special that you chose Oct. to share. I can imagine what an emotional roller coaster this was. It is awesome that your family share in your work with Susan Koman.

    Blessings, Jeanne

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  11. Thank you all for commenting on this very special post...i know we all have our own stories and I think you for taking the time to read mine! Debbie thank you for sharing yours, you are an inspiration yourself! and i see that you are a lucky soul...Jeanne, If I am an inspiration to you and your family, I am glad... Kim

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  12. Thank you so much for sharing your story with us Kim. I can't begin to imagine your heartbreak of finding out you were pregnant at the same time you found out you had cancer.
    You are a survivor and one that is obviously changing the lives she touches. I am honored to know you.

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  13. Love this and hearing your story is amazing! You make me smile :)

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Thank you so much for visiting my Little Pink Blog:) It looks like I now have the ability to reply to your comments! YAY! So I hope you check to see if I have left you a reply, because I always read your comments. They really tickle me...Pink of course...