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Breast Cancer Survivor

BREAST CANCER SURVIVOR CLAUDIA IRMAS Heart

“It was ten years ago. I found the lump myself, before getting a mammogram. The doctors said it would probably have been missed by an ultrasound test. The surgeon scheduled a biopsy quickly and the result was positive. I have a longtime friend (since elementary school) who is a doctor – who was a huge support to me, as well as great friends like Carrie Kaufman (who works in the creative area at Brighton).

One of the most important things in my recovery was the support of my Family and Friends. Another all-important factor is finding the doctors you need. I believe in giving back, and as a chairperson of the American Cancer Society, I have helped them make strides toward prevention, research and a cure for breast cancer by participating in many of their events.”

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Meet The Expert - Our Charity Partner Caring For The Community
September 29 - October 5

BREAST CANCER SURVIVOR SARAH PEPPLE Heart

“I was 32 when I was diagnosed and I’m 35 now. I wanted to share my story to help people in the community. I had felt a lump for a few years, and my doctor, who is also a breast cancer survivor, told me to watch for any changes. The next year, when it changed, my ultrasound test was negative. Six months later the lump was bigger, and oddly shaped.

When I got a biopsy, the physician said it was not cancer, but two days later he called and said it was cancer. After having a double mastectomy, 6 months of chemo, 40 rounds of radiation and then reconstruction, I now can pursue having children. Before my diagnosis, I was already a positive person, but now I seize the moment more than ever. Experiences are more important to me than things.”

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Meet The Expert - Our Nutritionist Caring For The Body
October 6 - October 12

POWER OF PINK BRIGHTON CARES Heart Heart In recognition of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, we would like to remember and honor members of our extended Brighton family. POST A DEDICATION
BREAST CANCER SURVIVOR GAYL WALDER Heart

“I found out I had the BRCA gene after my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. My first option was to do nothing and hope that I would fall on the side of the percentage of women whose BRCA gene did not develop into invasive breast or ovarian cancer. Another option would be to take the cancer drug tamoxifen. I would still need approximately three mammograms and a C-125 test every year. The last option I faced was to have a double mastectomy and a hysterectomy.

"The decision for me was very difficult, but then it became clearer. I took one look at my four children and knew exactly what I needed to do. I was fortunate to receive a gift, the gift of knowledge and choice. I had the option to act, so I decided on prevention. Yoga and meditation saved me during that time, so I became certified as a Yoga 4 Cancer instructor. On my journey, people have been there for me, so I am there for them."

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Meet Our Health Expert Caring For The Heart
October 13 - October 19

BREAST CANCER SURVIVOR JANICE WEST Heart

“Eleven years ago, when I found a lump I was told that I would be okay, and I am. But getting back to normal after treatment took a long time. Breast cancer makes you feel loss. I am humbled by how great my treatment turned out to be, and by all the support I received from my family.

I am one of 9 kids, and my siblings are wonderful. This diagnosis changes you. You start listening to people more. My daughter Katie was a huge support to me throughout the process. Today, I manage a dermatologist’s office and Katie is one of the nurses. We are blessed to see each other every day.”

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Meet The Expert - Our Physician Caring For The Mind
October 20 - October 26

BREAST CANCER SURVIVOR BECKY RUIZ Heart

“I was at home, and I had just had a mammogram a couple months before, and I did a self-exam. I got another mammogram and was told I was fine. A few months later I was still feeling uncomfortable, so I went to my gynecologist, who sent me to a surgeon for a needle biopsy. It was cancer, so I had a mastectomy. I was 36 years old and had two small kids, so I opted for a mastectomy and not a lumpectomy, just to be sure.

Three weeks later I started chemo, which lasted for 9 months. I later had reconstruction. Six months later I found out my cancer was estrogen-related, so I also had a hysterectomy. So many people helped and supported me through the process, including my husband, cousin and girlfriends. I walked with Susan G. Komen Foundation six times to raise dollars for breast cancer research. It’s been 28 years now. I wanted to see my kids graduate, and today I have grandchildren. I deeply appreciate every day.”

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Meet Our Survivors & Their Families Caring For The Family
October 27 - October 31

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