Melissa Bahr, Stage IIIB Survivor/Patient
I was originally diagnosed about six years ago, and my life officially flipped upside down! I went through a pretty tough surgery followed by six months of chemo treatment. I completed it and celebrated! But then random lymph nodes were found, and I had to go through treatment again. Another surgery, tougher then the first followed, and then more treatment. I am currently still going through IV chemo treatment every other week, while I continue to live my life.
I absolutely refuse to allow this diagnosis to alter me and make me lose focus on what matters. I have struggled and fought, I have cried and picked myself up off the floor more than once, but I have also smiled and laughed so much over the past six years! I am proud of where I am today! I know that I have three children counting on me every single day, and this bump in my road isn’t going to change that. I will continue to do whatever I have to in order to show others that it can be done! And I will wake up every day ready to fight and kick “C”s butt!!
What One Million Strong means to Melissa
I want to be involved with an organization that makes a difference to those dealing with this disease. To me, One Million Strong means that fighting alone might be hard, but together we can change the face and future of this horrible disease!
I want to help others and let them know that they are not alone during a time that many feel completely isolated, even when we have all the support in the world. I want to invest my time in to making a difference and to help, support, and motivate others while they struggle and worry about the days ahead. And I want to be someone that others can look up to knowing that even when it’s scary and we are terrified of the unknown, to never give up and to keep fighting!
My advice for those newly-diagnosed is to breathe. I think the best thing you can and should do for yourself is to take a moment and attempt to clear your mind and relax. We are given so much information and so many opinions, it’s important to remember that you and your health comes first. Research, ask questions, and feel content that you are making the best choice for you.
Another thing I have learned throughout my journey, and this one has taken me many years of work and is honestly still a challenge for me, is to accept help when offered. I tried to do (and still do) everything on my own because I didn’t want to look weak or like I couldn’t handle things by myself. But besides the benefits of taking some weight off of you and your responsibilities, letting others in also helps family and friends that just want to support and love us.
My last piece of advice is to stay positive. Believe in you and your ability to overcome this challenge. You can do it!
[button]Sign the Petition[/button]