Our First Grant Recipient — Tara–An Update
In May of this year, Tara published an important update on her Facebook page. It was the announcement that she was officially cancer-free for two years, and she had passed something her doctors called “the survivor anniversary,” the two-year mark after her mastectomy.
“Most people didn’t even know I’d had cancer,” Tara admitted. “I hardly told anyone.”
Back in January of 2015, when we shared Tara’s story as our first grant recipient, she was still in the midst of chemotherapy. Tara was diagnosed with Stage IIB breast cancer in April of 2014. Eventually, she would undergo a left breast mastectomy, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, as well as two reconstruction surgeries.
A Slow Healing
By January of 2016, Tara’s hair was starting to grow back, and the healing process from chemotherapy had begun. However, the journey back to health hasn’t been smooth sailing. Tara explains that her body is still releasing stored toxins from the chemo and radiation drugs and that the cleansing process will take time.
Despite the fact that her body is still bouncing back, Tara is feeling much better. She tells us that she has more energy and feels more focused. “I can actually remember what I’m reading,” she announced, explaining that during chemotherapy her brain was so affected that she struggled to read and write.
A Sense of Support
When we asked Tara what it meant to receive an SOPFCA grant when she was in the middle of treatment, she surprised us with her answer. Though she had lost most of her income during the long treatment process as a result of being too exhausted to keep up with her business, it wasn’t the money that she appreciated the most. It was the support of the community that the grant represented.
“When I first got diagnosed, I realized that I was going to have to face cancer all alone,” Tara admits. “I didn’t know how I was going to do it.” When she found out about the SOPFCA grant, Tara was shocked that an organization existed that was willing to help women like her.
Tara remembers feeling very alone and sad during the beginning of her treatment, but gradually she realized that she never doubted that she had the inner strength to overcome cancer. Her advice for any woman facing breast cancer treatment is to “heal your emotional energy too!” The mind and the body are connected, and you cannot heal the body without also healing the emotional energy.
As Tara begins to look toward the future, she is eager to bring on more clients and use her newfound energy to expand her business. Every day she feels a little stronger and has written a personal account of her integrated approach to healing cancer, which incorporates traditional and alternative medical practices.
To SOPFCA and all the donors who made her grant possible, she says, “God Bless you!”
We are so happy for Tara’s continued recovery and wish her luck as she closes the cancer chapter of her life and starts a new chapter of health.