A Story of Breast Cancer Survival…

October 4, 2010

I am nervous right now as I type this post. I’m going to talk about something personal and it doesn’t have anything to do with getting in shape. Ever since the age of 12, when I lost my mom to breast cancer, I wanted to do something that will would help find a cure. I used to dream of finding a cure myself, so other kids wouldn’t lose their moms to breast cancer. I always planned on doing all the “walks for the cure” and raising money for breast cancer research, etc. Regrettably, close to 30 years have gone by and I haven’t done one single thing that would raise awareness or help in regards to breast cancer. My hope is that this post will be a start.

Breast Cancer Survival

[October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month in the U.S. With 110 women dying of breast cancer per DAY in the U.S. alone…we have a long way to go.]

My Friend Grant, His Wife Steph, & Their Inspiring Story…

I believe you can have life-long friends that you rarely keep in contact with. You may not see them for 10-20 years, but you share a beer and don’t miss a beat. This is especially true if you grew up together in the same town, went to the same schools, etc. Well…I consider Grant to fit into this category. He was a slight over-achiever in school (in a good way), a 4.0 grade point, popular, and actually nice to everyone. I went to school with Grant from 5th or 6th grade all the way through 12th grade. He went to college in California and didn’t hear much from him after that, but always figured I would run into him again. Fast forward 22 years and he contacts me on Facebook…

“My Wife Just Started A Blog About Her Battle With Breast Cancer”

Grant told me the title of the blog was called Bald, Fat and Crazy. He knew my mother died of breast cancer and simply wanted to share how his wife beat the disease. He also didn’t tell me the story behind the name. His wife Steph puts it best on the front page…

“The title of my blog and this first page warrant a bit of explanation. Clearly, I was Bald. And clearly I was Fat. However, when you come to realize that my baldness was caused by chemotherapy and my โ€˜fatnessโ€™ was caused by being pregnant at the same time, then the mere fact that I was smiling in this photo is evidence that I was also Crazy. Add to this scenario the pending adoption of a baby girl and the Crazy goes to a whole new level.”

Click Here to Read the Rest of Steph’s Inspiring Story —>


Note:
I didn’t want to summarize her story of beating breast cancer here. She does an incredible job on her blog, with photos and music, etc. If you can spread the word about her site, that would be great. Her goal is to give people hope, even when circumstances don’t look so great.

----> (New) Facebook Comments..."Cause all the cool kids are doin' it!"

{ 55 comments… read them below or add one }

Josh- Home Made Fitness October 4, 2010 at 11:26 pm

Rusty, thank you for posting this. My grandmother is a breast cancer survivor, thanks to experimental proton therapy, and I am a huge supporter of the cause.

This was a fantastic thing to read on a Monday. Cheers

Clint @ Crude Fitness October 4, 2010 at 11:30 pm

I lost a person close to me a couple of months ago to lung cancer.
It’s amazing how many people it touches.
Stephanie is truly an inspiration.

Mike- Fitness Contrarian October 4, 2010 at 11:47 pm

Hey Rusty,

Sorry about your mom. It must have been very hard for you to lose your mother at such a young age.

It was brave of you to right this post. Keep up the good work.

Best – Mike

Eric Moss October 4, 2010 at 11:57 pm

I am sorry to hear about your mother. You have a powerful blog and this is probably the best way to raise awareness

Yavor October 5, 2010 at 2:02 am

@Rusty – thanks for sharing Steph’s story. I’m really really sorry about the loss of your mom at such a young age (both of you being so young!).

@Clint – really sorry for your loss my friend!

I don’t want to sound like a blind optimist, but I think we are on the verge of something big when it comes to health. I’m subscribed to Dave Kekich’s newsletter and he really inspires me. Off to read Steph’s blog now!

Yavor

Rafi October 5, 2010 at 7:14 am

This was a really, really powerful post. It’s important that you’re helping to raise awareness and I pray that with God’s help, we are able to find the cures to these terrible diseases.

-Rafi

Raymond - ZenMyFitness October 5, 2010 at 7:19 am

A story always needs to be told and Steph’s is a good one to hear.
Yeah cancer seems to be everywhere with not much hope sometimes.

My mom had breast cancer and had a Mastectomy.. in those days it was complete removal but I never remembered her complaining about her condition.

Some people can be very brave.

Raymond

Katie @ Run For the Bikini October 5, 2010 at 9:35 am

Amazing and inspiring story, I will be sure to share it.

Tim - The Lean Look October 5, 2010 at 9:40 am

Rusty,

You’ve inspired me to go out and do something good to support breast cancer this month. I got a little choked up reading her story. Thanks for a great morning read…..

Tim

Fitness Training Programs October 5, 2010 at 10:48 am

Good post! I too lost my mother from Breast cancer just 5 years ago. I can definitely identify with you Rusty. Their really needs to be more awareness out there about breast cancer.

Steve - More than just Muscle October 5, 2010 at 11:00 am

Rusty,

I feel for you, I lost a parent too when I was young (my father died in a car crash when I was 9). I know how hard it can be not having them there to help bring you up.

Breast cancer awareness is a noble cause, I hope you manage to make the difference you are seeking.

Steve

Thomas - Waist Hips & Thighs October 5, 2010 at 12:20 pm

@ Rusty,

First, sorry about the lost of your mother but from getting to know you over the years I’m sure she would be proud of the person you have become. Great post on something that more people should be aware of and look to gain more knowledge about. It takes a lot of strength and courage to put a post up about something that touches so close to home.

-Thomas

Joe October 5, 2010 at 2:11 pm

Very powerful post.

Darrin - Lean, Mean, Virile Machine October 5, 2010 at 2:17 pm

Rusty,

So sorry about your loss. My mother is an 8+ year survivor of breast cancer. It’s great that you’re getting this word out, because I know firsthand how important it is to find some hope during times when you or a loved one is affected by this disease.

-Darrin

Pete - The Healthy Minute October 5, 2010 at 2:34 pm

Hey Rusty,

That was truly a touching story. You have inspired me to do more to support finding a cure.

Best wishes,

~ Pete

Jordan - The Healthy Teacher October 5, 2010 at 2:39 pm

This is an encouraging story. You will make a difference. I think many of us have been affected by cancer, and it only helps when good people keep spreading awareness. Sorry about your loss Rusty, that must have been difficult.
– Jordan

Richard October 5, 2010 at 2:43 pm

Hey Rusty,

Hope you are well. Firstly, I would like to thank you for your wonderful insights, in the vein of this spectacular website. Aside from this, I must commend your sheer strength and courage in being able to talk about such a solemn affair. Please, accept my sincere condolences for the the loss of your dear mother. I encourage you to stay strong in what you are doing. For you are, without a doubt, making a positive and dynamic difference in the lives of all those who read your work. Thank you for touching me this afternoon. And to all those who have lost someone due to breast cancer, or are battling it themselves, or and know someone who has been diagnosed, my thoughts and prayers are with you. Tough it is, but God will grant you the much needed comfort.

Tom- Your Fitness Quest October 5, 2010 at 2:50 pm

Thanks for sharing that link. I am always amazed by the spirit and attitude that many people fighting serious diseases display. I don’t know if I’d be able to keep such a good attitude while experiencing such challenges. Best wishes for Steph and many others who find themselves in a similar situation.

This kind of reminder should make us grateful for the good health many people take for granted. Some people think they have it rough because they are battling love handles or being out of shape, but something serious like cancer really puts things inperspective.

Dan October 5, 2010 at 3:30 pm

Thanks for sharing. It’s great that u are doing something now. and it’s good to hear of someone who beat cancer..

Dan

Frank - Free Relationship Advice Newsletter October 5, 2010 at 3:55 pm

Rusty,

Very sorry to hear about your mom.. very touching and powerful post. Thank you so much as always. Take care.

alexander October 5, 2010 at 3:58 pm

Hey Rusty,i just want to say i’m sorrry for your mother,really bad news.I hope and wish that a cure for breast cancer will be found

[email protected] October 5, 2010 at 4:30 pm

Rusty,

Thanks for sharing your experience and Steph’s story.

I was very worried when my mother told me she had breast cancer, and felt terrible as she went through all of the treatment. Fortunately they caught it early enough and she survived.

I’m going to read Steph’s post now. Thanks again.

[email protected]

Jenny October 5, 2010 at 5:13 pm

Awesome! Loving your friends blog! I really admire her beauty and strength ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks for sharing!!!

Claudia October 5, 2010 at 5:14 pm

Hey Rusty, so sad to read about you losing your mother at such a young age. I can only imagine what that must have been like. Made me stop for a minute and remind myself how thankful I am for the fact that my mom is still around after she was diagnosed with and cured from breast cancer fifteen years ago. Both my aunt and my paternal grandmother were not so lucky and lost their battle.
Most of the time, we take life for granted and worry about trifling stuff, but once you’ve seen your loved ones fight hard and still lose their grasp on life, it puts everything back in perspective. Health is a precious thing and your post reminded me that we should all cherish it. Thanks, Rusty.
Take care, Claudia

Kyle Battis October 5, 2010 at 5:19 pm

Hey Rusty.

Thanks for posting and I believe this is an important topic to cover. What good is being lean and fit if you are not healthy after all? I lost my grandfather to Cancer and its something we all need to be aware about.

Keep up the great work man,

Kyle Battis

Jorge M October 5, 2010 at 8:13 pm

For sure, this post is a great start for raising awareness and also for sharing what’s important. Thanks for talking about cancer Rusty! it helps remind us to celebrate the time we have with our beloved ones and always to remember the ones we’ve lost.

Kelly-Fitness Overhaul October 5, 2010 at 8:15 pm

Rusty,
Sorry to hear about your mother. I lost my father to pancreatic cancer when he was 50. I kind of know what you went through, although I was 21, not only 12 like you. This post is just another way that shows how selfless you are and how much you like to help people. The amount of traffic that you get to this blog is going to raise awareness to so many people. Thank you for that. My wife’s grandmother is a breast cancer survivor, so this hits home for us. I think every person in the world has been affected by this terrible disease and I hope that someday it will be a distant memory.

You shouldn’t be so hard on yourself about doing things to raise awareness. Teaching people to stay in shape and eat better has helped more people than you know beat or prevent cancer. With my dad dying at such an early age, this is the main reason that I stay in shape and write my blog.

You’re one of the good guys,
Kelly

Alykhan - Fitness Breakout October 5, 2010 at 10:02 pm

Rusty,

Thanks for sharing. I lost my grandmother to breast cancer about three months ago and it was really hard on my whole family. It’s great that you are taking steps to increase awareness.

Alykhan

Patrick October 5, 2010 at 10:31 pm

Thanks for sharing a bit of your personal life with us Rusty.

I’m sorry to hear about the loss of your mother at such a young age.
And thank you for directing us to your friend’s wife blog. It reminds us, that we should never take life for granted 1st.. and that we ought to fight whatever comes in our way.. and she did it with a smile..

Wonderful women

Anna October 5, 2010 at 10:34 pm

Rusty, I will definitely tweet about her story and link to her on Facebook. I love her blog and her attitude. Most people would just give up during her situation but she’s still very positive. I wish there were more people like her in this world.

Anna

Ronald Garner October 5, 2010 at 11:55 pm

Hey Rusty, I’m sorry to hear you lost your mother when you were 12 years old. I’m truly blessed, because my mother is still with me. This just proves the old saying is still true ” your health is your true wealth”. To everyone reading this blog, please take care of yourselves and don’t take your health for granted. God Bless

Annie October 5, 2010 at 11:57 pm

Thanks for sharing Rusty and taking that important step towards breast cancer awareness. Great post!!

Yoke October 6, 2010 at 12:23 am

Hey Rusty,

Sorry about your mum. My mum is a survivor of breast cancer and we were lucky it was in its initial stages.

Thanks for posting this. Take care.

Yoke

Ian October 6, 2010 at 3:06 am

Rusty-

Thank you so much for having the guts to share your story with us.

Steph’s blog is tremendous, and thanks to your help, her message will be able to inform and inspire even more people affected by cancer.

I just emailed it to several female friends, with instructions to spread the link via any means necessary, including the dreaded email chain letter!

-Ian

Bill October 6, 2010 at 4:45 am

Hi Rusty,

My condolences about your mother. Thank you for sharing and giving strength to others, while also making us aware.

Posted it on my blog as hope others do to.

May we show appreciation to the women in our lives that bring love, happiness, that spark that makes each day incredible with them in it !!!

Bill

Shareef October 6, 2010 at 5:52 am

Wow what great feedback. I hardly recognize you internet! I was gonna say what they said. Guess that nervousness was unfounded hunh!

John October 6, 2010 at 8:04 am

Hi Rusty,

Thanks for a good post. Losing you mum so early must have been devastating. As a former school principal I can empathise as we lost two young [one male and one woman in their 20s] members of staff to cancer close on the heels of one another.

Keep safe.

John

Anders October 6, 2010 at 8:41 am

Great post..
I will be on the streets raisind money to fight cancer..

Francisco October 6, 2010 at 9:17 am

Thank you.

I send you my love from Germany.

Francisco.

Lauren Snyder October 6, 2010 at 10:10 am

Hey Rusty,

Great post, I’ll be checking out her site soon. Thanks ๐Ÿ™‚

CNYmicaa October 6, 2010 at 12:41 pm

Rusty, thank you for this. My friend was just diagnosed. 30 yrs old and a single mom. Crazy. I am glad you are speaking out about this and I am very sorry for the loss of your mom…

Josh October 6, 2010 at 1:16 pm

Hey Steph. Rusty fitness encouraged me to make a comment. Although I have never experienced breast cancer, my brother, at the age of 21, died of colon cancer. Since then my mom has created a small charity event that gives its proceeds to the local hospital located at the Orangeville, Ontario Dufferin County. So far the event has raised over $30,000. The money goes to helping residents, with life threatening illness, get needs that are not covered by health care. This may include gas cards, and internet service to allow communication to friends and family. We will be having our fourth event in 2011.

Phil,MD October 6, 2010 at 4:34 pm

I lost my 40 yo sister @ age 40 to breast cancer. She underwent open heart surgery at age 16 for a serious birth defect, unrepairable till then. Did this early surgery seriously impair her immune system? There is a growing movement that we all carry cancer cells but the wisdom of our bodies rids us of this scourge repeatedly before it grows to the “noticeable” stage. billions of cells. See David Servan-Schreiber’s “Anti-Cancer” for ways to help yourself stay cancer-free.

frank burns October 6, 2010 at 9:18 pm

Slyvie Foortin ran a campaign for Breast Cancer in 2008 and although this terrible disease had no bearing upon my life, I stopped and considered how a donation would ease the burden of sufferers. Whenever a worthy cause confronts us, as one voice, we do have the power to transform lives and make sudden changes just by combining and sharing our love.

Bu then, there are also other times that we cannot contribute financially, just a small note of encouragement is enough to give them the strength to carry on.

We see and hear all of you.

dave rn October 6, 2010 at 10:21 pm

When increasing awareness of breast cancer, we should also be increasing awareness of the role of adequate vitamin D levels and it’s role in preventing breast (and many other) types of cancer.

Ahmed October 7, 2010 at 9:12 am

Totally understood what you meant about the life long friends and touching story. Glad you shared it.

[email protected] October 7, 2010 at 10:32 am

Rusty,

I was just in New York & Chicago interviewing Baby Boomers to learn about their changing attitudes. I expected to hear positive attitudes about conquering aging, instead I heard fear and disappointment that time was running out.

Imagine how this fear would be amplified if they got the news that Steph received.

You inspired a new post – thanks.

[email protected]

Ray - Six Pack Abs Diet October 8, 2010 at 2:41 am

Hey Rusty,

Thanks for sharing your experience and the link to Stephanie’s blog.

What an incredibly inspiring story of survival she has (not to mention an excellent writing style)! I posted a link to her blog on FB in the hopes that my FB friends will spread the link around so that it can get in front of the eyeballs of people who are going through this/have gone through it or can relate in some other way.

Ray

mickieb October 12, 2010 at 6:59 am

My daughter’s paternal Grandmother had breast cancer that haunted her for years. She eventually died from complications of heart disease. Cancers are a devastating disease that we or loved ones hope never to have to get. There are things we can control and some things we can’t control to possibly prevent breast cancer. May be this article will be helpful:

breastcancer.org/risk/index

Jeffrey343 October 18, 2010 at 4:29 pm

My 43-year-old wife was diagnosed with breast cancer in August. Thank God it was caught extremely early thanks to her annual mammogram. She had no risk factors and is in very good shape. Everything has worked out great so far – surgery is over and she’s now going through radiation (thankfully no need for chemo). She’ll be fine thanks to early detection.

There is a lot of talk among health care folks that women don’t need mammograms until they are 50. I’m not so sure about that. If it is caught early, it is very treatable with close to 100% survival rate. While our ordeal has not been a fun experience by any means, it hasn’t been nearly as bad as what a lot of women endure for their treatment. The only way anyone would know my wife is going through this would be for her to tell them.

Alex "Dude Where's My Muscle" Siddy November 1, 2010 at 10:15 pm

Hey Rusty,

Thanks for writing this post highlighting and spreading awareness of breast cancer and the impact that it is having on women.

Sorry to hear about your mother passing from this.

All the best,

Alex

buying shares for beginners January 15, 2011 at 11:41 am

Nice to read these inspiring stories. It gives women with breast cancer hope.

Elliptical reviews July 20, 2011 at 4:17 am

You are simply a super brave women..I cant stop myself to appreciate you.Since then you have been striving to bring the awareness in all about the dangerous breast cancer.At initial stages we can do something. Identifying it in initial stages is an important aspect.Thanks for it..Keep going….

Mri technician October 31, 2011 at 6:18 am

this article was motivational and inspiring. i really liked reading this article.

puapve December 13, 2011 at 12:57 am

I don’t want to sound like a blind optimist, but I think we are on the verge of something big when it comes to health. I’m subscribed to Dave Kekich’s newsletter and he really inspires me. Off to read Steph’s blog now!

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