In 2012, 40-year-old Monica Chambers skeptically agreed to have her first mammogram after her doctor advised her to. When the mammogram showed an abnormality, Monica went to the East Alabama Medical Center’s radiology department to determine what exactly was wrong. After a few tests, Monica was diagnosed with breast cancer.
A nurse from the EAMC Breast Health Center was the first to meet with Monica about having chemotherapy, but Monica was determined she would not go through treatment. “I’m just going to die with breast cancer,” Monica said. It was her husband who finally convinced her that she had to try and fight the cancer for herself and her young children.
Finally, Monica listened to reason and started chemotherapy, and she’s happy she decided to do so. “It’s like it became a part of me and I became a part of it,” Monica said about going through treatment. She especially praised everyone at the EAMC Breast Health Center for being so kind and welcoming to her. “The people at the EAMC really helped me a lot,” Monica said.
After she had already been diagnosed with breast cancer and started treatment, Monica’s husband began having health problems and was put on disability. This meant that they were both sick and out of work, leaving them uninsured. “The foundation picked me up,” Monica said. “They made sure I could afford anything I needed.”
Monica said the thing that helped her the most through her fight with cancer was people being there for her. “I had people behind me that I never would have thought. Even people that I didn’t know,” Monica said. She said that she was given food, groceries and kind words that uplifted her. She also said it made her feel better when people would call or let her know they were praying for her.
The main thing Monica said that people who haven’t been through breast cancer should know is to not try to sympathize with the person affected but instead be straight-forward with them. Monica said she would encourage people to not be afraid to ask questions or say whatever is on their mind. Said said if someone wants to help, all they have to do is simply ask, ‘Is there anything I can do?’
Monica has been a breast cancer survivor now for 4 years now. After surviving herself, she hopes she can help others get through as well. “I just want to get my story out to help anyone. Whether it’s someone that’s going through breast cancer or someone that has family members or loved ones going through. I just want to help them feel comfortable.”
Honored to share this story,