Breast Cancer Survivor: Saundra Fuentes

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    A Journey Down the ‘Pink Brick Road’

    Saundra Fuentes

    By Saundra Fuentes
    Breast Cancer Survivor
    NASHVILLE – Statistics
    says, “One in eight women
    will be diagnosed with breast
    cancer in her lifetime.” I have
    to admit, like so many other
    women, I never thought
    I’d hear those devastating
    words; “You have breast
    cancer.”
    That quote ends in a period,
    but for me, and others
    like me, those words, “You
    have breast cancer, end
    in an exclamation point.”
    This moment cannot be described,
    or imagined, it must
    be experienced.
    I want to share my journey
    through this particular
    valley. The psalmist said,
    “yea though I walk through
    the valley of the shadow of
    death I will fear no evil, for
    Thou art with me, Thy rod
    and Thy staff they comfort
    me.” This is not just something
    I learned in Sunday
    School. This is something I
    have experienced first hand.
    The hand of Jesus in my
    life in a special way. It was
    mid July, a hot and sticky
    Sunday afternoon. I jumped
    in the shower to get ready for
    church, and…there it was….
    My heart skipped a beat,
    surely not….but, there it was.
    A lump about the size
    and shape of an almond
    …I waited until morning,
    maybe it would go away…
    not a chance.
    When the long night
    passed, (and they will) , it
    was still there.
    The following Friday I had
    an appointment in Texarkana
    at Christus St. Michaels. I
    was told to go home for the
    weekend, I would be contacted
    on Monday.
    Monday morning I sat in
    the doctor’s office with a
    friend who was a survivor
    and heard those ominous
    words. The only word to
    describe this moment is
    ‘surreal.’
    Like I’m watching someone
    else, I was sure it wasn’t
    to whom she was referring.
    While I was still trying
    to gather my thoughts, my
    friend and co-worker (who
    at this time was a three year
    survivor) was on the phone,
    making appointments with
    specialists and getting my
    insurance on track. God
    placed many people in my
    path to guide me through.
    I headed straight for Little
    Rock to see Dr. Dana Abraham.
    By now my sister was
    on board. Sisters are funny
    creatures.
    When we were little we
    fussed and fought, but either
    of us would take on a bear
    if he threatened one of us.
    Well, I had a little sister that
    was prepared to take on this
    particular “bear.”
    Surgery was scheduled,
    after which i was diagnosed
    with stage 3 cancer because
    my lymph nodes had been
    invaded.
    I was then sent to oncologist
    Dr. Diane Wilder.
    Dr. Wilder ordered six
    months of chemotherapy,
    with one year of herceptin,
    along with six weeks of radiation.
    Eight years have passed
    since that fateful day. I am
    happy and healthy. I am
    scheduled every six months
    for a check up and blood
    work.
    I do not know the rest of
    my story. I plan to live happy
    and healthy forever, but
    whatever the future holds….
    God is faithful.