Patricia Johnson, Survivor
These two words kept me strong as I battled breast cancer diagnosis. I prayed for my strength and the strength of others that were in the same treatment room.
Treatment were an extensive process but my family and friends provided prayers and support. I had to go through 15 chemo treatments. Three sessions were once a month and then once a week for 12 weeks. My wonderful sisters and son would come to treatments with me and we would make the most of the time spent together. I often had to keep my arm raised to keep the fluids flowing, but I managed to still play cards with them and catch up on life events. Five to six hour days can take a toll on you so at times there would be small naps.
When volunteering you meet so many different people. Some are there to assist the cause and some are there to give back for the help and guidance they were gifted with. Most leave a lasting impression because of what you see them doing.
At one event, I met someone who would be a big part of my life. I did not know when our paths were going to cross, but when we had the opportunity to talk during one of the volunteer events, I knew her kindness was going to bless me one day. I took the opportunity to contact her shortly after I was able to grasp what was happening to me. I felt the immediate support I was going to receive over the next few months.
One contact led to another and before I knew it, I formed relationships with individuals who were going through the same thing I was or individuals who were placed as path markers so they could guide me through my next steps. It was a great feeling to not feel so lost, to feel the love by so many.
Staying fit during treatment was very important to me. I was blessed with the energy to continue physical activities and hit the trails with anyone who wanted to join. Mental therapy on the quiet trails definitely helped me cope with all the changes I was going through.
When I decided to create my own fundraising team as a breast cancer survivor, I decided to go with the team name “TOT – Trails Over Trials.” I would not allow the trials to bring me down and I was committed to complete any trail that was put in front of me.
My son was also a huge inspiration and motivation. He moved closer to home after his first year of college when I was diagnosed just in case help was needed during treatment. He continues to impact many now as a personal trainer by transforming others to live healthier lives. I definitely continue to seek his guidance from time to time!
Fundraising and fellowship are awesome opportunities to get close with those that are fighting the same battle or know someone who has lost the battle. Each time I volunteer for an event, I become close to someone who is going through treatment or has won their very own battle.
Funny thing about cancer…you never know when and how it’s going to hit. Early detection is what helped me strive through my treatment and become a survivor so I could share my story and testimony. I want to be the avenue for someone that is needing that direction or just an ear to listen.
I remember just two days after my first treatment I was ready to dive into my first opportunity to volunteer again. I was anxious to give back and be there for those who needed my support. I look forward to growing my team and adding to the service that I can provide to Susan G. Komen Dallas County. Getting connected with the community will be my drive this year so I can get others involved.
Patricia Johnson, Breast Cancer Survivor