I love that the NFL promotes Cancer Awareness throughout the month of October. Cheering at our BCA game always means so much to me because my Mother is a breast cancer survivor. She was diagnosed in 2001. Even when she was sick, I still remember her being at every school function or dance competition for my siblings and I. Her strength continues to inspire me everyday, just as it did back then. I am so thankful for my mom and encourage everyone to fight like a girl so we can tackle breast cancer together! I love you mom!
One of my favorite parts of football season is BCA month because we get to empower thousands of women who are fighting or have fought breast cancer. This year, BCA month is especially important to me because one of my co-workers recently found out she has officially kicked breast cancer! I have the pleasure of working with Dr. Iris Saunders, the Special Education Coordinator at the school where I teach. She was diagnosed with breast cancer in July of 2016 after finding a lump in her breast. She immediately consulted her primary doctor and together they came up with a plan of action. Her oncologist suggested chemotherapy and radiation in order to attack the tumor they found. During the course of a year, she went through four rounds of chemotherapy and five straight weeks of radiation. She also had a mastectomy in order to remove the tumor. Dr. Saunders took breast cancer head on and did not let this diagnosis defeat her. One of the many qualities I admire about Dr. Saunders is her resiliency. She fought through several infections during her treatment and varying effects from the chemo and radiation. However, this did not dismay her. She set a goal for herself and she was determined to make it happen. As of March 21st, she is officially in remission from breast cancer! For the next 10 years, she will be on medication to ensure the cancer does not come back, as well as routine check-ups with her primary doctor and oncologist. I respect and admire Dr. Saunders beyond measure because, in my opinion, she is the living embodiment of strength. She kept a positive attitude throughout her treatment and always had a smile on her face whenever you would see her around the building. I am truly grateful to have her in my life because I aspire to have the resiliency, positive attitude, and strength that she exudes everyday. Dr. Saunders, YOU ROCK!