According to the resource BrestCancer.Org, White women are slightly more likely to develop breast cancer than African American, Hispanic, and Asian women. But African American women are more likely to develop more aggressive, more advanced-stage breast cancer that is diagnosed at a young age. African American women are also more likely to die from breast cancer.
However, today there are more advanced therapies and greater outcomes for patients to live longer and have fewer side effects. I had a chance to interview three amazing women who beat the odds of breast cancer and are now helping other women with their journey.
Dr. Missy Johnson, the Reinvention Strategist and Break Free Coach is the CEO of Fearless Women Rock LLC, a platform created for women to share their stories. She is affectionately known as “Miracle Missy” after the doctor gave her a 3% chance of living. Now she travels the world sharing the message to never give up on your dreams, goals or vision. Believe in yourself, have faith and you will conquer anything. Dr. Missy resides in Detroit with her son and husband.
1. Dr. Missy Johnson
BDO: How did you beat the odds of Breast Cancer?
MJ: I was diagnosed with breast cancer on my lunch break in 2017. It was devasting because I had just come out of a coma two years prior. I was angry with God because I felt like he was punishing me. After many tears, I told God that if you allowed this to happen, I will carry the cross with humility. That is when my sixth sense was revealed and it is Faith. Faith was my secret weapon to beat Stage 3C Breast Cancer and having a mind-shift that I will live and not die!
BDO: What advice would you give to a woman newly diagnosed?
MJ: I had no symptoms of breast cancer. It was an annual mammogram appt when I found out. Get the facts first and follow your doctor’s instructions. Get an accountability partner that has experienced cancer, because a strong support system is the key to your survival.
BDO: What is your contact information for people to reach you. This can be your website or social media sites?
MJ: FB IG and Twitter @AskdrMissy
(E) [email protected]
2. Chris-Tia Donaldson
As the owner of natural hair company, Thank God It’s Natural or TGIN, Chris-Tia went through her breast cancer journey relatively young. She also had her hair fall out due to treatment at one of the biggest moments in her business. Here’s her story:
BDO: How did your diagnosis come about? Did you discover something abnormal during a self-exam?
CD: I was also just 36 at the time of my diagnosis. When I thought of breast cancer, I thought of people like Sheryl Crow, Melissa Ethridge, Joan Lunden, Suzanne Sommers and Christina Applegate.
I never gave much consideration that this was something that could happen to me.
I was actually taking a shower and noticed it then. Initially, I thought it was hormonal-related. I had a cyst removed from my breast in my 20s. Given my age and the fact that I felt perfectly healthy, breast cancer was the furthest thing from my mind.
After two to three months passed, I made an appointment to see my doctor. Although she did not think it was cancer given the lump’s size, shape and the fact that it was soft and movable, she still recommended a mammogram just to be safe.
BDO: What happened when you were first diagnosed?
CD: When I first was diagnosed, my doctor asked me when could I start chemotherapy. I told them I had a big business meeting with Target on 3/22 that I had to look good for.
Based on that, we scheduled my treatments in such a way, that I would be off and looking and feeling good for that meeting.
But, I soon learned that you can’t plan for everything, because we ended up