One year after the excitement of beginning my new job as a Magisterial District Judge, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. On January 15, 2019, I had finished morning court when my doctor called and said the words that no one ever wants to hear – “It is (breast) cancer.”
By the grace of God, I am alive and am doing ok! Now I will use my experiences to help others and fight against this disease. Amazingly, I went from rarely ever having a cold to fighting a terminal illness. My treatment plan has included a lumpectomy and lymph node removal, chemotherapy, and radiation. I am currently undergoing infusions and will take a hormone blocker for the next five years.
Since my diagnosis, I’ve learned that one in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer and breast cancer does not have to run in a family for someone to develop it. I am the first person on my mother or father’s side to have it. Also, Black women have a high risk of developing breast cancer and disproportionately die from it.
I want every woman to know that early detection is pivotal. Every woman should perform self breast examinations monthly and get an annual mammogram.
I thank God for my family, especially my husband and kids who have been with me every step of the way, my friends, and the Reading community. I will always be grateful for the support and that I never had to fight alone.