Breast Cancer Awareness – Now that you’re aware, what are you gonna do about it?
Breast Cancer Awareness month is here!
I’m glad you’re aware of breast cancer. It’s taken a lot of years for breast cancer awareness month and everything pink to grow its roots in our world. That pink ribbon is as recognizable as Oreo. I love that! When my Mom got sick it wasn’t nearly as popular as it is today. Pink was not being worn by sports teams. You didn’t see cars with Pink ribbon magnets. It was considered more of an “older woman” concern, actually. My mom attempted to get a mammogram in her 20’s after a female family member was diagnosed. She was turned away because they didn’t do routine mammograms on women under 40. It was only a few years later that she found the lump and was diagnosed with BC.
Fast-forward to today and women with family history are treated much differently. IF you are proactive and take your history seriously. I started mammograms and breast ultrasounds at age 18 because of my mom’s death. Every 6 months I alternated between mammo/ultrasound. We now know that dense breast tissue is also a contributing factor and women are notified of their density! <<<read about it here, its’ crucially important! There is genetic testing available you can read about here, if you have family history. Sidenote: My insurance paid for mine. There are also many ways to treat your risk, my insurance also paid for my double mastectomy that I had done, even though I did not have BC. You can read more here.
Love the Pink
What’s my point in all of this? While being aware and supporting the cause of breast cancer awareness is absolutely wonderful. What are you actually doing to help prevent or cure breast cancer? Your pink shirt, Facebook profile frame and pink strip of hair is fabulous, rock on! Is that doing anything to actually fix the problem? Yes! we have to keep talking and teaching so everyone is conscious of this horrible cancer.
My point – don’t stop there!!! All the pink wearing in the world isn’t going to prevent you from getting breast cancer. It’s not going to detect breast cancer. I’d venture to say that some of you right now are thinking about wearing pink or making sure you post something on social media about Pink October at the same time you haven’t scheduled your yearly mammogram. Oh, and for the love, don’t spam your friends email with chain mail about BC, that never solved anything my sweet/well-intentioned friend. Bless your heart.
Pink won’t save your life but this can…
Have you even touched your breast recently, other than with a loofa? Go ahead! Do your self breast exam. Here is a link to help you if you don’t know how. If you have a hubby, he would love to help. Honestly, he might even notice changes before you. Sidenote: have you taught your daughter to do self breast exams? My daughter is 12 and I just taught her. I want it to be second nature to check and pay attention to changes! It’s silly that kids today know how to use condoms but not how to check for BC.
Have you had a relative diagnosed with BC? Have you talked with a genetic counselor? I credit my genetic counselor with saving my life. She was the first supportive medical person in my journey of having a PBM. Ladies, hear me! Being aware is only the first step. Don’t walk around aware and naïve. Put action into your awareness. Be proactive in your fight against breast cancer. Stop reading this and schedule your mammogram, now.
Had your mammogram, now what
Maybe you’re reading this saying yep done it, I’m good. That’s fantastic! If you have the means, maybe consider using October to donate to a foundation. There are a lot of great places doing great work for breast cancer patients. Be sure to research their financial plan and make sure the numbers are going toward research and not just CEO’s. One that is dear to my heart is the My Destiny Foundation. This group is helping women financially and emotionally with prevention. These women have been a huge support group to countless women facing breast cancer and BC risk. They help women that can’t afford mammograms, genetic testing and surgery. I love that they try to help women avoid BC!
PLEASE, wear your pink. Keep spreading the awareness. My police department back home just purchased Pink badges to wear for the month of October. When I saw what a friend of mine had done to get that task accomplished, my eyes leaked. It’s beautiful and appreciated. I love feeling support like that. I love raising awareness. And I love seeing generations continue to know and learn. So Rock The Pink this month. Then, schedule your appointment. Call the women you love and ask them if they’ve had their mammogram. It might be the reminder they need. You might just be the key to their early detection just by a simple phone call or text. Or simply share this blog.