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Bonnie's Story

About her story

"There's some things in life you have to share. You have to have someone to lean on, and they'll help you get through."

After performing a self-breast exam, Bonnie Brooks discovered a lump and immediately scheduled an appointment with her doctor. On September 11, 2008, she was diagnosed with Stage 3 metastatic breast cancer. With a difficult treatment regiment ahead, including chemotherapy, she realized that she could not face breast cancer alone.

"I was always very independent and I've learned with breast cancer you can't always be independent," says Brooks. "You have to be dependent on people to help you through."

Hear Bonnie's inspirational story and learn more about how she overcame breast cancer.

Related Questions

  • Unlucky Youth Profile

    Does a biopsy hurt?

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    almost 6 years 6 answers
    • View all 6 answers
    • Evelyn Heilbrunn Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2012

      Hey, you!

      The first thing that comes to mind is, don't jump to conclusions and think of yourself as unlucky. You don't know anything yet. Many, many girls and women have breast lumps or abnormalities that aren't cancer. It's pretty rare to have breast cancer in your "youth."

      Does a biopsy...

      more

      Hey, you!

      The first thing that comes to mind is, don't jump to conclusions and think of yourself as unlucky. You don't know anything yet. Many, many girls and women have breast lumps or abnormalities that aren't cancer. It's pretty rare to have breast cancer in your "youth."

      Does a biopsy hurt? Not really. You don't say whether it's a needle biopsy or a surgical biopsy. Either way, they'll give you "Novocaine" -- same thing as the dentist -- to make it numb around the area of the biopsy. That's the only pain you'll feel. The needle is really small. After the first stick of the needle everything gets numb so you don't really feel any additional sticks.

      You might feel some pressure, pulling, or tugging, but the biopsy itself won't hurt. If you happen to feel ANY pain at all, tell them right away and they'll give you more numbing medicine.

      Please let us know how everything goes.

      4 comments
    • Anne Marie jacintho Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2003

      I agree with Sharon's advise I hope you have talked to your parents and have an appointment with your doctor. We are all worried and concerned about you. I'm also worried about your use of your profile name "unlucky youth". You need to talk to someone that you trust that can...

      more

      I agree with Sharon's advise I hope you have talked to your parents and have an appointment with your doctor. We are all worried and concerned about you. I'm also worried about your use of your profile name "unlucky youth". You need to talk to someone that you trust that can get you the proper help you need . Not sure if school has started for you yet as it has here in hawaii. If it has please go and talk to your school nurse or counselor or a favorite teacher, or even a friends mom if you are having a hard time talking to your own mom You have a lot of concerns and worries. You have been through a lot of illnesses we all understand your fears and concerns and are praying that you get the care that you need. as a mother of a 13 year old daughter My heart aches when she is sick and worried i feel her pain as if it is my own. I pray all goes well with you. Take care.

      Comment
  • Diana Dale Profile

    What care or treatment do I need after a chemo treatment?

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    almost 7 years 2 answers
    • Diana Foster Payne Profile
      anonymous
      Stage 4 Patient

      Yes, as Ali said, all breast cancers are different and treated differently. I had chemo first, then my recent double mastectomy. I was due to begin radiation next but unfortunately I'll have to have more chemo beginning in a couple of days....then radiation. Good luck and God bless you in your...

      more

      Yes, as Ali said, all breast cancers are different and treated differently. I had chemo first, then my recent double mastectomy. I was due to begin radiation next but unfortunately I'll have to have more chemo beginning in a couple of days....then radiation. Good luck and God bless you in your journey Diana.

      Comment
    • Ali S Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2011

      Everyone is different b/c all breast cancers are different. I went chemo, lumpectomy, then will have radiation, but some have surgery first

      Comment
  • Nicole Rodgers Profile

    My doctor is suggesting that I do 6 weeks of radiation after chemo. Did anyone else do this? Did anyone have any scarring or bad side effects after radiation? (a few family members are trying to talk me out of it)

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    over 6 years 6 answers
    • View all 6 answers
    • Betsy Chapin Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2010

      Hi Nicole,
      I had 36 radiation treatments after chemo. Radiation was a breeze compared to chemo. The burning was minimal and really just going everyday was a nuisance. I had a lot of sickness with chemo so after chemo was done I felt like a big weight was off my shoulders and radiation was not...

      more

      Hi Nicole,
      I had 36 radiation treatments after chemo. Radiation was a breeze compared to chemo. The burning was minimal and really just going everyday was a nuisance. I had a lot of sickness with chemo so after chemo was done I felt like a big weight was off my shoulders and radiation was not that bad.
      My advice on listening to family members is listen politely but do what you need to do for yourself and your health and remember your doctor has the knowledge and experience and is the expert in knowing how to treat your cancer. Get a second opinion if you need to for peace of mind.

      2 comments
    • Diana Foster Payne Profile
      anonymous
      Stage 4 Patient

      Hi Nicole, you didn't mention what stage cancer you have. I haven't reached the radiation part of my treatment yet but I'll be having it as soon as I'm given the go-ahead. All the women I've spoken to said the chemo side effects were much worse than the radiation treatments. Personally, I want to...

      more

      Hi Nicole, you didn't mention what stage cancer you have. I haven't reached the radiation part of my treatment yet but I'll be having it as soon as I'm given the go-ahead. All the women I've spoken to said the chemo side effects were much worse than the radiation treatments. Personally, I want to look back and say that I know I've done everything I can possibly do to be in remission. And if that means radiation, then that's what I'll do. As far as family members go....I know their intentions are good....but it's your body and health. You need to decide what's best for you! Good luck in whatever you decide and keep the faith in your journey. :)

      1 comment
  • Thumb avatar default

    I have gained about 20 pounds during chemo. I still have to have surgery and radiation. Does anyone have some tips to lose some weight?

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    about 6 years 9 answers
    • View all 9 answers
    • Rita Jo Hayes Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2009

      I gained around 25 pounds. I tried not to focuss on it and took the outlook that had a little more to spare when I did not feel good enough to eat or got sick. As the others have mentioned just focus on what you can do when you feel good enough to move around for some exercise (walking). I...

      more

      I gained around 25 pounds. I tried not to focuss on it and took the outlook that had a little more to spare when I did not feel good enough to eat or got sick. As the others have mentioned just focus on what you can do when you feel good enough to move around for some exercise (walking). I eventually got some of it back off, but again I don' t focuss on it. I take each day at a time and feel thankful for all that I have and am. Hang in there.

      Comment
    • Sharon Danielson Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2007

      Chemotherapy --messes-- with you in many ways. The way you metabalize food can be one of them and also lack of regular exercise. Unfortunately, the way to lose weight is nothing magical... exercise and a careful selection of foods you eat. Vegies, fruit, lean protein, whole grains. My friend,...

      more

      Chemotherapy --messes-- with you in many ways. The way you metabalize food can be one of them and also lack of regular exercise. Unfortunately, the way to lose weight is nothing magical... exercise and a careful selection of foods you eat. Vegies, fruit, lean protein, whole grains. My friend, who I call a "foodie" told me the easiest way to shop for the right kind of food.... she says "Shop the perimeter of the grocery store" because that is where you find the least processed foods. The other is eat food that is closest to the way is "grew". The last was don't eat anything that is "white" which means "processed" white flour, sugar, ect. Hang in there and take care, Sharon

      Comment

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