As the nights draw in and the days are getting cooler not only is this the month that the clocks fall back and in the United Kingdom we lose an hour, It’s halloween with odd shaped pumpkins and turnips for lanterns. Before you clad yourself in fancy dress get your fingers working and check your breasts. After all it’s October — Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
What’s the fuss I hear you say?
In 2020, there were 2.3 million women diagnosed with breast cancer and 685,000 deaths globally.
.At the end of 2020 worldwide there were 7.8 million women alive who were diagnosed with breast cancer over the past five years.
When I was 23 years of age I had an inward nipple and discharge coming from it. My breast just looked “odd” compared to the other one. I had two children, my youngest son was 6 months old. My husband nagged me to go to the doctor and get it checked it which I did. Very quickly I was referred to the hospital, scanned and had surgery. I’m 55 years of age now and so glad I went to see the medics.
Looking back, things moved quickly everything felt like a whirlwind. The staff at the hospital in Edinburgh, Scotland UK were outstanding, nurses answering questions and alleviating my fears. My surgeon Micheal Dixon was an absolute angel of a man. I felt safe in his hands. My family in particular my husband were very supportive. I remember after my surgery my hubby and my eldest sister Helen coming home with a couple of zebra finch for me. We named them George and Mildred after a couple in sit com. The love of my family and the birds well and truly helped with my recovery. The truth was I was scared and emotional. At times I was putting on a brave face, trying to live life as a wife, Mum and daughter. Look after my very young children and live life as normal as we knew it was difficult however looking at the two beautiful boys that we had together, the very happy marriage and the amazing parents that brought me into the world I had everything to live for.
Here in the UK the NHS offer a fabulous screening Programme and there are countless publications widely available as well as dedicated breast charities to encourage people to be self aware, less embarrassed and make sure they know how to perform a self examination and know signs and symptoms to look out for. Please remember changes happen for many different reasons and most lumps are not cancer. However, it is best to get anything that is new, different or worrying you checked…