Winning the FIGHT with triple-positive stag3 IBC

On November 5, 2020, test results revealed I have been diagnosed with is what is known as “Triple Positive” Inflammatory Breast Cancer.  This sudden diagnosis has thrown a wrench into my plans for what happens next in my life—I’m not unique in that I have this type of cancer, but I am willing to publicly share and document my journey.

As with many cancer patients and families of those living with cancer, I realize this fight takes many people being in the ring.  Also like many cancer patients, other than beating and surviving this disease—my greatest desire is to continue maintaining my responsibilities to those that I am responsible for and obligated to—my family, my job and business.  Like many other cancer patients, we realize our ability to care for and maintain our many responsibilities is going to be diminished; we will have to rely on others during our healing and we will not be able to perform fully at the level we did pre-cancer at our jobs, in our communities, in our churches...our lives are either about to—or already have—dramatically changed.

I realize that in order for me to beat this cancer and live treating this disease called IBC the rest of my days, I will need days away from work—and my business is in retail—vintage items, crafts and handmade items, and antiques.

and as we are heading into the busiest time of year for retail, this scares the heck out of me, especially since I am beginning treatment immediately.  This reality shocks me into a panic because I also realize that I have a need for an increase in my income for the added expenses of cancer treatment—this I know is a concern for anyone experiencing any medical-type “crisis.”

Additionally, I also understand that in order to continue working, I need help with daily tasks that I would normally be able to handle with my workload.  I cannot lift over 10 pounds and will not be able to do so for a long while—this makes even tasks like carrying groceries and changing trash bags a challenge.

As I journey through this, I’m writing about and sharing my experiences, to disseminate information and give HOPE to others like me and their friends and families that are on this journey, too.  

I’m looking forward to documenting this journey, sharing it, and hopefully experiencing the kindness of others sharing personal journey with others that will benefit from it.

Your kindness of sharing my story or the giving of a generous gift funds my increased living and travel expenses during treatment for IBC.  Please subscribe to updates as I begin to take this very personal journey publicly.

Thank you for your help. -Shena 608/575-1048

Please note:  a portion of your gifts will be donated to the UW Hospitals and Clinics for cancer research. 

On October 28, 2020, my life changed dramatically. At 46 years young, I have been diagnosed with stage 3 inflammatory breast cancer—only two months after a perfectly clean mammogram on August 27, 2020. IBC is aggressive, but beatable...we found it early.  -Shena Collins


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Shena Collins 
Westfield, WI

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