PUBLISHED ON: 27 August 2019

Becky shares why self-checking helped her with an early diagnosis and how she's trying to move forward from her treatment.

Becky

I first noticed that my nipple had gone inward and wouldn’t come back out. I mentioned it to my husband who searched online. We found information about inverted nipples and the suggestion that I should get it checked out. 

When my GP examined me, they felt something underneath my breast. I was 'referred for an emergency mammogram. 

After my mammogram appointment I was called for a biopsy. I spoke to a breast care nurse who told me that I had breast cancer.  

Although I suspected it, I still cried. You never think it’s going to happen to you.  

I had a mastectomy with immediate reconstruction on 16 April. I didn’t need chemotherapy as my Oncotype DX test came with a low score. I’ve been suggested for radiotherapy and am currently waiting for the appointment.  

After my surgery, I had a lot of swelling under my armpit and the breast area. I started to worry about people seeing me with drains and wound dressings, so I never left the house. 

Once my drains and dressings were taken away, I developed a hematoma. I had to go back into the operating theatre. This was exactly a month after my reconstruction.  

'It’s only now that I’ve been thinking a bit more about what I’ve been through. My body isn’t something I’m particularly confident about. I’m aware that hormone therapy will mean I’m likely to put on weight. 

Sometimes I forget what happened to me. It’s only when I look in the mirror at myself that I remember.  

When people ask me how I am I usually brush the question away and say I’m fine. I know that I got diagnosed and treated quickly, and I keep reminding myself. My husband tells me what I should feel proud for acting as fast as I did. Everyone keeps saying how strong I am or how strong I’m being, it’s just I don’t know any other way to deal with it. 

People hear the word cancer and they panic. It is so important to do what is right for you. Don’t let other people influence your decision, and make sure that the people supporting you know how you want to deal with the diagnosis and treatment.

Learn how to check for the signs and symptoms of breast cancer.

Signs and symptoms