[{"command":"settings","settings":{"basePath":"\/","pathPrefix":"","ajaxPageState":{"theme":"mbctime","theme_token":"aUpKchK5ow7_IDPYhLJN62_R7LWfMHe8DHId5nqY1BI","jquery_version":"1.10"},"colorbox":{"opacity":"0.85","current":"{current} of {total}","previous":"\u00ab Prev","next":"Next \u00bb","close":"Close","maxWidth":"98%","maxHeight":"98%","fixed":true,"mobiledetect":true,"mobiledevicewidth":"480px"},"CToolsModal":{"modalSize":{"type":"fixed"},"modalOptions":[],"closeText":"close","loadingText":"","animation":"fadeIn","animationSpeed":"fast","modalTheme":"CToolsSampleModal","throbber":""}},"merge":true},{"command":"modal_display","title":"","output":"\u003Cdiv id=\u0022ctools-sample\u0022\u003E\u003Cdiv class=\u0022view view-user-profile-front view-id-user_profile_front view-display-id-page_1 view-dom-id-836a548ffb8f6c81eb746c555730f33f\u0022\u003E\n \n \n \n \u003Cdiv class=\u0022view-content\u0022\u003E\n \u003Cdiv class=\u0022views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first views-row-last\u0022\u003E\n \n \u003Cdiv class=\u0022views-field views-field-nothing\u0022\u003E \u003Cspan class=\u0022field-content\u0022\u003E\u003Cdiv class=\u0027profile-images\u0027\u003E\u003Cdiv class=\u0022image1\u0022\u003E\u003Cimg src=\u0022https:\/\/www.mbctime.ca\/sites\/default\/files\/julielavesque_1.jpg\u0022 width=\u0022800\u0022 height=\u0022800\u0022 alt=\u0022\u0022 \/\u003E\u003C\/div\u003E\u003Cdiv class=\u0022image2\u0022\u003E\u003Cimg src=\u0022https:\/\/www.mbctime.ca\/sites\/default\/files\/julielavesque_2.jpg\u0022 width=\u0022800\u0022 height=\u0022800\u0022 alt=\u0022\u0022 \/\u003E\u003C\/div\u003E\u003Cdiv class=\u0022image3\u0022\u003E\u003Cimg src=\u0022https:\/\/www.mbctime.ca\/sites\/default\/files\/julielavesque_3.jpg\u0022 width=\u0022800\u0022 height=\u0022800\u0022 alt=\u0022\u0022 \/\u003E\u003C\/div\u003E\u003C\/div\u003E\n\u003Ch2 class=\u0022profile-title\u0022\u003EJulie\u003C\/h2\u003E\n\u003Cdiv class=\u0027profile-story\u0027\u003E\u003Cp\u003EJust as I was figuring out how to be a mother, when I was breastfeeding my six-month-old baby, I felt a lump under my arm. Something really didn\u2019t seem right to me. Since I had an appointment with our family doctor for my little one, I mentioned this to her. After examining me, she was immediately proactive and ordered the necessary examinations to see what the lump was, sending me to a specialist. \u003C\/p\u003E\n\u003Cp\u003EThere are many stories of young adults whose cancer was detected too late, due in part to the preconceived notion that cancer only hits older people. But because of my doctor\u2019s proactivity, in a few weeks I had a diagnosis of Stage 3 triple-negative breast cancer. I was 31. \u003C\/p\u003E\n\u003Cp\u003EOn top of the difficult side effects of treatment, I remember the grief and the questions I had about my role as a parent and the future. How many times I cried. It\u2019s hard for our loved ones to understand the disease\u2019s physical and psychological challenges.\u003C\/p\u003E\n\u003Cp\u003EI started reading up on it and following the blogs of women telling their stories. I had been feeling as though I was the only young mother in the universe with cancer, so that helped me feel less isolated by my (our) exceptional circumstances. \u003C\/p\u003E\n\u003Cp\u003EIn 2012, a year-and-a-half after my treatment ended, I was invited to attend Rethink Breast Cancer\u2019s Breast Fest Film Festival in Toronto. It was on the plane that I realized that I had a lump near my collarbone. It was more than just stiffness: I had a feeling of d\u00e9j\u00e0 vu. I went to the doctor and I was referred to the specialist who was already monitoring me. Since I was informed and aware, even if deep down inside I was hoping that my fears were all wrong, I knew that it meant a diagnosis of metastatic breast cancer. Unlike my first diagnosis which came out of nowhere, with no family history nor obvious risk factor, I knew what a diagnosis of mBC meant. At age 34, I was told I had metastatic breast cancer.\u003C\/p\u003E\n\u003Cp\u003EWhen I got the initial diagnosis, I remember quite clearly how my mom reacted at the doctor\u2019s office, how my dad, who was babysitting at home, reacted, how my partner reacted \u2013 he collapsed in the hallway when he heard, how my sister, who came over right away, reacted, and the many phone calls to close friends. But when I think about reactions to my mBC diagnosis, it\u2019s like looking through a distant fog. I really don\u2019t remember much. \u003C\/p\u003E\n\u003Cp\u003EThe words recurrent and metastatic are often confused, which meant that a number of people mistakenly believed I had to have treatments again, moving on to another topic. Even today, some of my family and friends are confused about what the treatments are for and what the prognosis realistically is. \u003C\/p\u003E\n\u003Cp\u003EAll my family, friends and colleagues rallied to offer assistance and support. When you\u2019re sick for a long time, in reality, the initial momentum fades and offers of help become less frequent. Everyone carries on with life, and natural selection takes place. True friends remain. Over time, the cancer looks further away to those who are not at the centre of the storm. Maybe my hair makes them think that everything is good and my life is easy... \u003C\/p\u003E\n\u003Cp\u003EThe treatments leave me tired and worn out, feeling like I\u0027m living two lives. Even though now I can look ahead, it\u2019s still difficult for me to ignore this enormous shadow over my life, our lives. Shortly after the prognosis, I couldn\u2019t even make any commitments or plans more than three months away: I was living from scan to scan. Soon, I will be among the 22 per cent who survive beyond five years. Even so, often I really don\u2019t know how to resume my life again. Each time, it gets put on hold. This life, between two treatments, two scans, two breaths. \u003C\/p\u003E\n\u003Cp\u003EI am not special, no better or braver than anybody else with cancer. I\u2019m vulnerable, sensitive and stubborn, just like I always have been. When I\u0027m alone, I collapse, I cry, I get angry, I question what my life has become. \u003C\/p\u003E\n\u003Cp\u003EOver time, I\u0027ve built a network for myself, mostly remotely, making connections with other young women with cancer. The friendships are honest and realistic, but the dark side is seeing them disappear, one after another. Of the four women with triple-negative mBC, I\u0027m the only one still around today. No matter how positive you are, it\u2019s still the same outcome: you have to come to terms with your own mortality.\u003C\/p\u003E\n\u003Cp\u003ESharing my history means speaking on behalf of those women who helped me move forward, like Anna, an extraordinary friend. I\u2019m doing it for the ones who are no longer here to speak, to give them a voice.\n\u003C\/p\u003E\n\u003Cp\u003EMaybe people see me as the woman who advocates for regional access to services adapted to the needs of young adults with cancer, or maybe as the woman who promotes communicating accurate information and a real picture of metastatic breast cancer. The people I meet virtually recognize my reliable sources and my indignation at the miracle cures circulating on the Web. But for my family and friends, I really hope that they recognize my strength of character, realism and intelligence in the face of the disease, and my self-deprecating manner. We can build memories by living together. \u003C\/p\u003E\n\u003Cp\u003ECurrently without a cure, and with a 22 per cent median five-year survival rate, cancer can become metastatic, no matter what stage the disease was detected at. Young women are not spared. \u003C\/p\u003E\n\u003Cp\u003EAs the disease goes on, our reality and our needs are different from people with an early cancer diagnosis. Research is our only hope for being still here tomorrow.\u003C\/p\u003E\n\u003C\/div\u003E\u003C\/span\u003E \u003C\/div\u003E \u003C\/div\u003E\n \u003C\/div\u003E\n \n \n \n \n \n \n\u003C\/div\u003E\u003C\/div\u003E\u003Cdiv class=\u0022item-list\u0022\u003E\u003Cul\u003E\u003Cli class=\u0022first\u0022\u003E\u003Ca href=\u0022\/pfe_user_story\/ajax\/158\u0022 class=\u0022use-ajax prev\u0022 title=\u0022\u0022\u003E\u003C\/a\u003E\u003C\/li\u003E\n\u003Cli class=\u0022last\u0022\u003E\u003Ca href=\u0022\/pfe_user_story\/ajax\/161\u0022 class=\u0022use-ajax next\u0022 title=\u0022\u0022\u003E\u003C\/a\u003E\u003C\/li\u003E\n\u003C\/ul\u003E\u003C\/div\u003E"}]