Breast cancer survivor encourages others to celebrate life
I have gone through it — you know, the losing of my hair, losing my fingernails, my toenails, my breasts. I was diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer on July 28, 2008. That date is when everything changed. It kept playing in my head: I have cancer, I have cancer, I have cancer.
My concern was how others were going to react to it — my sisters, my mom, my dad and my daughter. I knew I had to fight because, at the time, my daughter was 26, and I’m like, “I can’t leave her.”
I had to decide what I was going to do with this journey. Am I going to go in fighting? Am I going to go in crying?
I’m celebrating life. I’m celebrating each year that I got through. I thought that when I lost my job of 20 years that that was important, but it wasn’t. And I loved my job, but this job that I have now — as a cancer survivor — is what I’m supposed to do: Be a survivor, support the next individual, and push them, push them, push them!
– Wanda Anderson
Breast cancer prevention
Preventing breast cancer begins with living a healthy lifestyle. While some risk factors, including a family history of breast cancer, cannot be changed, the following lifestyle changes can help reduce your risk:
- Limit alcohol intake.
- Don’t smoke.
- Use caution when considering hormone replacement therapy.
- Exercise 30 minutes a day, six days a week.
- Eat a healthy diet.
- Pay attention to changes in your breast, such as lumps, bumps or skin changes.