These are stories from the breast cancer community. Video and blogs detail day-to-day experiences, tips and words of inspiration for others living with metastatic breast cancer (mBC).
My mBC Diagnosis: A Reflection
In 2018, I spent two years going back and forth to the doctor’s office and hospital because I was feeling very sick. The symptoms I experienced were fatigue, bone pain, tight chest, difficulty sleeping, no appetite, and inability to concentrate.
Sex, Intimacy and mBC
Let’s talk about SEX! Of all the things I thought I would lose to cancer, sexual function was never one I considered, but here I am, writing a blog about sex and intimacy (or the lack of, in my life).
Thirteen Years: Cherish the Moments
Thirteen years ago, I was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer (mBC), more commonly known as stage IV breast cancer. Only 29% of women diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer live at least five years after the cancer is found.
No Pink Tutus Here, Let’s Talk Activism
Advocating for patients with breast cancer, especially Stage IV breast cancer, can feel overwhelming. Maybe you are unsure where to start, or maybe you have guilt you aren’t doing enough. Some people even fear using their voice for change, and that’s okay
How to Prepare for the Challenges of Breast Cancer Awareness Month
Oh October, you’re supposed to be filled with spooky activities and fall spices. But for many of us in the breast cancer (BC) community, it feels like the pink ribbon floods every store, every commercial and everywhere in between.
Looking at Death Differently: Perspective and Planning
So far, I’ve had eight years to check items off my “Things I Must Do Before I Die” list (it’s like a Bucket List, but tedious and boring), yet I’ve put it off for as long as humanly possible. It’s honestly a LOT. The tasks seem heavy and daunting
MBC and Family
Khadijah and her daughter, Deja, discuss what it was like to learn about Khadijah’s mBC diagnosis and how they leaned on one another during difficult times. Khadijah shares her advice for those going through similar journeys.
Friendships Within the mBC Community
Esther shares her experience with joining support groups after and mBC diagnosis, including her initial hesitations, what surprised her about the groups and how she has felt empowered after meeting people who are going through a similar journey.
Dealing with a Range of Responses After an mBC Diagnosis
Carol shares how she dealt with a range of responses when she shared her mBC diagnosis with friends and family. During this time, Carol opens up about becoming your own best advocate and the importance of leaning on those who prove they’ll always be there
Harnessing the Power of Female Friendships Amid an mBC Diagnosis
It was a hot August afternoon when I found out I had de novo metastatic breast cancer (mBC) – meaning I had never been diagnosed with breast cancer before – and when I was diagnosed, I learned the cancer had spread to my lungs.
The Importance of Mental Health in the Black Community
Mental health is not something that is talked about often in the Black community; and yet, it's an essential aspect of physical health and life satisfaction.
The Dense Breast Dilemma
“It is like looking for a snowball in a snowstorm.” That is how my oncologist described looking for a tumor among dense breast tissue (DBT) to me.
Dealing with Stress Around the Holidays
Holidays, well, they can be stressful in general. It’s easy to put unrealistic expectations on others during family gatherings, or to allow societal pressures to cause us unnecessary anxiety because we feel as if we are falling short.
Loss, Hope and Love in the Storm
A survivor of breast cancer, diagnosed in 2003 and diagnosed with metastatic disease in 2010, I am no stranger to managing the uncertainties of a deadly illness. I became increasingly concerned in March of 2020 as we learned that coronavirus cases were be
Out on a Limb
As you have likely experienced, life can throw you a curve when you least expect it.
Love While Living with MBC
I never dreamed that at 40 I would be twice divorced. To be honest, after my metastatic breast cancer (mBC) diagnosis, I never imagined I would be alive at 40. As it tends to do, breast cancer snuck up on me and family. It brought a lot of changes, both
Becoming My Own Best Healthcare Advocate
I was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer (mBC), stage IV de novo, in May of 2014 at age 37, three years before the recommended age to start receiving annual mammograms. After hearing my primary doctor say, “Oh you’re only 37 you don’t need a
“Your life is made up of 2 dates and a dash – make the most of your dash,” Holley said once in a speech she gave. Holley 100% made the most of her…
Do Tattoos Cause Cancer? – The Making of the Stupid Stuff People Say to People Living with MBC
It’s understandable. You want to say something comforting and hopeful to someone you know living with cancer. But, the truth is, you don’t really know what to say. So...
What Being an Advocate in the MBC Community Means to Me
My name is Angela and in the breast cancer world I am known as Jersi. I was diagnosed 3 times with breast cancer, and have been a metastatic patient...
Patricia Wu was one of the many metastatic breast cancer (mBC) patients who modeled in the 2019 AnaOno New York Fashion week Cancerland show…
Self-Advocacy as Self-Care
My little boy was born in November 2015, after a wonderful pregnancy and a mostly uncomplicated delivery. I was thrilled to be a mother, but also...
Tattoo Artist Helps Women Embrace Their New Post-Mastectomy Bodies With Art
Samantha Rae Carniato is a tattoo artist from Vancouver Island, Canada. She specializes in helping women embrace their new bodies and life post-mastectomy with art…
Carol Miele talks about her advocacy work and how she was able to get the governor of the state of Florida to sign a proclamation declaring that…
Tsiliana Jolson Walking in the New York Fashion Week Cancerland Show for Those Not Able to
Tsilianna Jolson is a stage IV metastatic breast cancer (mBC) patient. She modeled in the AnaOno New York Fashion week Cancerland show to speak…
Beth Fairchild talks about how taking an active role in the mBC community has helped with her own diagnosis.
Using My Experience to Educate Others
My name is Latonya, I’m a native of Sumter, SC, and a veteran of the United States Army. In 2006, I separated from the Army and started my career as a government…
Living with MBC
Michael Kovarik talks about living with metastatic breast cancer and how he empowers himself to confront the darkness that comes with that.
Nurse to MBC Patient
In this vlog, Carol Miele recounts the feeling of when she was first diagnosed with mBC and talks about how she overcame the overwhelming feelings she endured.
I Choose Every Single Day to Live My Life!
I was first diagnosed with stage III breast cancer in 2013, at the age of 36. My son was only 11 months old at the time. All of my energy that should have...
What It Means to Live with Stage IV Cancer
I have finally settled into the reality of this diagnosis and what it really means to “live” with stage IV cancer, which is considered a “terminal” diagnosis...
Understanding MBC: Chronic vs. Terminal
The term “terminal” usually refers to a progressive disease that is incurable, irreversible, and does not respond to treatment. Death is usually the expected result...
I was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer the same week that my son turned two. He’s now three and a half, and the span of time since my diagnosis has been...
Working Through Treatment
Esther Brickley talks about how and why she keeps working during her cancer treatments.
Sheila’s Experience: Comparing BC to MBC
Hello! My name is Sheila, and I'm 51 years old. I’ve been married to my wonderful husband Mike for 25 years and we have 3 children. When I was first...
Challenges of Being Diagnosed with MBC at 18 years old
Life can be hard sometimes. Life with metastatic breast cancer can be even harder. I was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer at the young age of 18 years old...
"Metastatic Madness" a Poem About Living with MBC
You have to be half-mad To live with this disease, It seems to have a way Of bringing you to your knees. Cancer cells invade your body And soon...
Carol Miele talks about the importance of communicating openly with your physician.
Relationship with Doctor
Beth Fairchild discusses her relationship with her doctor and how she maximizes her time with her doctor.
Doctor Visit Preparation
Esther Brickley is on her way to a doctor’s appointment and finds a great opportunity to give viewers tips on how to prepare for an upcoming doctor’s visit.
Preparing for Treatment
Sheila McGlown talks about how she prepares (or doesn’t prepare) for upcoming doctor's appointments and treatments as well as how she looks to God and her prayers...
Beth Fairchild talks about how she digests information from her doctor, and how she approaches discussions with her doctor as it relates to her treatment.
Approach Doctor Appointments
Beth Fairchild talks about her support system when it comes to going to the doctor.
The Doctor Preparation
Beth Fairchild talks about how she prepares for upcoming doctor appointments.
Time for Others
Esther Brickley talks about being a metastatic breast cancer advocate and making time for others.
Creating a Legacy for Myself and My family
Being diagnosed with breast cancer at 30 years old is not something you would normally think about. I was Stage III, HER2/neu+ breast cancer. I thought I…
How Three Women Became Dear Friends via Their MBC Diagnoses
My name is Lisa and my mBC story began on July 22, 2015, when I tripped over my stationary bicycle and broke my neck, my C2 to be exact. I refer to it as...
You're Not Alone
Emily Garnett was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer (mBC) in 2017. She was 32 years old.
Valuable Advice About Living with MBC
The most valuable piece of advice I’ve gotten about living with metastatic breast cancer (mBC) is to focus on the positives! This isn’t anything…
Supporting Loved Ones
Tim Watkins lives with his partner and Story Half Told participant, Michael Kovarik, in upstate New York. He traveled to New York City to show…
Keeping it Together Mentally for One’s Self w/ MBC: The Internal Self-Battle
I am a medical rarity – I am one of the women who got metastatic breast cancer (mBC) before the age of 40. I had a better chance of being struck by…
Self-Love: It’s a Journey Indeed
It’s hard enough to remember to love ourselves these days, whether you have breast cancer or not. But layering on surgery or chemotherapy can certainly...
Stress Management as it Relates to Managing an MBC Diagnosis
Receiving a stage III breast cancer diagnosis at the age of 31, when I was already 8 ½ months pregnant, was very stressful to say the least. It’s not…
Carol Miele gives viewers advice on ways they can cope with their disease through therapeutic activities such as music therapy.
My Mother Loved Each Day to the Fullest
This story is about my mother. My mother was diagnosed with stage IV breast cancer at the age of 54. It had metastasized to her liver…
Esther Brickley talks about the importance of exercise and what helps her stay active with mBC.
Artist Tells Her Story by Painting Artwork on MBC Patients
Marianne Duquette Cuozzo is an artist foremost, but also a three-time cancer survivor. She shared her artwork with the models of the AnaOno New York…
Carol Miele gives viewers advice on ways they can cope with their disease through therapeutic activities such as support groups.
Self-Care: Move it to the Top of Your List
A breast cancer diagnosis can turn your world upside down. Endless doctor appointments. Scans. Prescriptions. More scans. Talking to your doctor…