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.
Managing Business and Breast Cancer
BDO: Your diagnosis came at the time of some very important business deals for TGIN and you pushed forward as planned. How did you know that was the right course of action for you, rather than stepping away to focus strictly on treatment?
CD: When I first was diagnosed, my doctor asked me when could I start chemotherapy. I told them I had a 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 getting calls to do meetings with Walgreen’s and Rite Aid and I just had to wing it even though I was at my weakest.
The Chemotherapy Process
BDO: Describe your treatment plan and experience with chemotherapy.
CD: I had a lumpectomy, followed by 8 rounds of chemotherapy and 33 rounds of radiation. My doctors were extremely aggressive with their choice of treatment given my age.
In older women, they tend to only do a lumpectomy and radiation, if the size of the mass is small, because of their shorter life expectancy.
In terms of the side effects, the biggest thing is extreme fatigue and mild nausea. Although I’ve never been pregnant before, I would say it is akin to a really awful pregnancy. I basically dealt with the side effects by taking it easy and resting a lot.