Healthy Life: Breast Cancer Awareness Month

October is breast cancer awareness month. There is pink everywhere. Even with the ambulance service I work for, we switch our gloves to pink ones. To me, however, every day is breast cancer awareness. I make it my mission to make sure people "Feel it on the First", a monthly reminder to do a breast exam. My friends and family have been incredibly involved and committed as well, and call or text me to let me know that they have made a mammogram appointment, have done their exams, etc. Every month I post a reminder on my Facebook to do a breast self-exam, and love when friends share it on their own pages. I am so incredibly touched when someone tells me they got checked.  I feel like they truly are doing it for me, and I am so appreciative. 

Some breast cancer survivors and advocates take offense to the color pink, saying that Breast Cancer is not all pretty pink and roses. While I agree with the fact that Breast Cancer is hell, the colour pink doesn’t bother me. I know the colour pink as representing breast cancer. I have the pink cancer ribbon tattooed on my inner wrist. As long as the message gets across and that it spreads awareness, I don’t care what colour the ribbon is.

The latest statistics from the Canadian Cancer Society are that 72 Canadian Women are diagnosed with Breast Cancer every day. Fourteen Canadian women die from it a day. One in eight women will be diagnosed in their life, and one in 31 will die from it. 

How many women do you know? How many women have you crossed in your life so far? Those numbers are unbelievable. A friend of mine had breast cancer before me. Her friend had it before her. We have mutual friends as we are all around the same age, and so are our kids. Some of my friends have now had several of their friends go through this. We are in our 30s. We shouldn’t be worrying about this kind of thing! I have therefore made it my mission to prevent as many loved ones from getting sick as possible. I cannot possibly imagine anyone else going through what I went through. 

Have you done a breast self-exam lately? Have you gotten checked at the doctor? If you answered “no” to those questions, then please make a point to do it today before you go to sleep. Do not put it off another day. A day turns to a week. A week turns to a month. It can mean the difference between life and death. Literally.

People are all about posting on social media their healthy meals and their workouts. For October, please make it a point to post ONE Breast Cancer awareness picture instead. A pink ribbon. A silly pic of you grabbing your breast to check yourself. Do it for me. Do it for you. Do it for your daughters and your mothers and your sisters and your friends.

Joy Rodgers is a working mom who, we can now say, is a cancer survivor!! This is the story of her journey...