After her mother and cousin both made their way journeys through breast cancer Kim Kadehjian Bradshaw thought her yearly mammogram always had her back (or in this case her chest). After her Gynecologist thought he felt something Kim pro-actively went in early for her mammogram in 2015. When the mammogram and Ultrasound ame back showing nothing she choose to do a biopsy, which also came back showing no cancer. To this day she is not sure why, but she went back in, sensing something was wrong, at which time they did an ultrasound guided biopsy where she was officially diagnosed with breast cancer.
Today, after a double masectomy, time spent in an barometric oyxygen chamber and a not so great 2015/2016 she tries to take on each day with a smile. “Nobody has the crystal ball but I am told my prognosis is excelent and I will do what I can to make sure all woman know to be vigilant. Mammograms are not 100% accurate and dense breast are tough to read, and in my case my dense breast tried to kill me, so my motto is MAKE SURE SOMEBODY FEELS YOU UP!
At 33 I married the love of my life... By 38 we had a beautiful house and beautiful, healthy, amazing twins! Life was incredible & became even more amazing when I found out I was pregnant again... Right after turning 40, I had my son. My twins were 22 months, my son almost 3 months & I was off to my 'follow up' exam... My Ob/Gyn did a follow up/annual exam which included a breast exam. He found 'something', but I didn't think much of it since my breasts were 'returning to normal' after having a baby... This discovery lead me to having my first mammogram.
The picture of health (I always ate healthy, exercised, etc), I found myself sitting in a room filled with other women like myself, or so I thought. My mammogram lead to some biopsies, which eventually lead to a phone call... 'Kristen, are you sitting down? You have breast cancer.' That same day I exercised, had family over to see the babies & now I sat in disbelief... How did this happen to me?! Devastated & scared, I met with my amazing team of doctors who mapped out the best plan for me... 'You're going to be ok.' That helped me get through the 12 weeks of chemo, a lumpectomy, multiple scans, 8 weeks of chemo, 6 weeks of radiation & 8 more weeks of chemo.
From February 2015 until May 2016, I fought this horrible disease, but refused to let it define me. Yes, I lost my long, blonde hair, lost weight & cried myself to sleep many nights... However, I have an amazing husband, 3 beautiful babies & an incredible support system both in & out of the hospital... I have too much to live for to even think about letting this disease get the best of me.
I've participated in several fundraisers for cancer, met amazing people who will be in my life forever & have found a calling I never thought would find me... Helping others fight cancer. I'm a former schoolteacher, however this has become my focus... If it happened to me, it can happen to anyone. 'Together we are ONE'...
Nicole (Nikki) Longwell
I was born in Dallas, Texas and I was only 34 years old at the time of my diagnosis. We have BCRA2 (breast cancer type 2) in my family. Having breast cancer has taught me to go with the flow and adapt with change.
It is my hope that other young women are educated, as well.