Pink Journey Angels
My personal journey with breast cancer began in 1981 with a diagnosis that would currently be classified as triple negative with a BRCA1 mutation. I had a mastectomy (there was no option for immediate reconstruction). Two years later I had a tram flap reconstruction. In 1983, I was diagnosed with bi-lateral lung metastasis. After 9 months of chemotherapy, my lungs were clear. My journey continued in 1991 with a new primary breast cancer. I had a second mastectomy, this time with immediate reconstruction. It would take until 2006 for research to identify my BRCA1 gene, of which a second primary cancer is a marker. Throughout my breast cancer journey, I became aware of the importance of women speaking with and supporting other women on a similar journey. In 1988, I participated in developing an innovative peer support program for women newly diagnosed with breast cancer. This formative program continues today as Pink Journey Angels providing individual peer support for women diagnosed with breast cancer. I developed and provided a 6 week support group program from 1989 to 2016. I also have a special interest in supporting women with metastatic or recurrent breast cancer. As women supporting women, the message is powerful: we are meeting the challenge of breast cancer everyday…Surviving and Thriving.