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Raquel Vegas Profile

Raquel Vegas

Stage 3A Patient

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Current City
San Francisco, CA
Your Story

I found a lump in my breast on a fluke. I never did monthly breast exams and I am under 40 so I wasn't getting mammograms. I will never forget the day I found that lump or how I felt. I called my Mother crying & she of course (Like most Mother's) tried to calm me down & told me it could be several other things, not to worry, to just get checked out & that I would be fine.. But I knew. For weeks I avoided the Doctor just telling myself it would go away, I told close friends what I suspected but they all brushed it off & assured me I would be fine. I couldn't sleep for days it was all I thought about. I finally got up the courage to go to the Doctor's. They preformed a biopsy on me & told me they could not see anything to indicate cancer but that I should call back to get my results the following week, before I was able to call back I received a call from the hospital stating my tests came back "inconclusive" so I was seen again on 8/29/2011 & that's when I was given the news. I called my best friend who came immediately. I cried briefly when I was told, deep down I already knew. I went home that day & told myself I would be fine, I would get through this no matter what & decided then & there to do something I never do.. Put me first. I have began to call the hospital my 2nd home, everyone has been so supportive & wonderful. Every step of the way someone has been there for me. Not to mention my friends & Family have been amazing also. They all keep saying how well I am handling this but the truth is, I am terrified & I do not know what to expect. We originally thought my breast could be saved but as it turns out, that isn't the case. I am having a mastectomy on Thursday 10/27/11 and the reconstructive surgery on the same day. My Doctor says I do not need radiation but will need chemotherapy. I know it sounds silly but I am terrified of losing my hair, absolutely terrified. I am not the most religious person but I do believe in the power of prayer, it has helped me stay strong & positive. It has given me patience where as before this (anyone who knows me could tell you i had none) It's helping me see what's really important & has allowed me to appreciate the people who have been in my life for a very long time or those who have come back into it. I know I have a long journey ahead of me and I know it won't be easy but I've always considered myself to be a pretty strong person both Psychically & mentally and I will continue to surround myself with positive people and continue to learn as much as I can about this disease to teach & empower & be a role model to those who's journey's are just beginning, who are scared & do not know what to expect but need a shoulder to lean on and need someone to listen to them the way I have been fortunate enough to have my loved ones & everyone in my support system listen to me.

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Breast cancer affects one out of every eight women in their lifetime.

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