Each October, we acknowledge the women – and in some rare cases – the men, who have heard the words tragically tumble out of the Doctor’s mouth: “You Have Breast Cancer”.
2023 marks 5 years since my breast cancer diagnosis. It feels like both yesterday and a lifetime ago. Intertwined with every part of my being, an extension of self, an all-consuming routine.
At my 5-year mark, I feel like there’s a participation ribbon permanently pinned to my chest, like the ones you’d receive at school sports carnivals. I’ve reluctantly ran the race and I got to the other side despite the heartbreak, the hurdles and the endless healing. For now, I am in the clear after having the full gamut of treatment from chemotherapy, a mastectomy, and my ovaries and fallopian tubes removed. It still feels surreal, regardless of the time past.
However, ever-so-tragically, my story isn’t like everyone’s. And the harsh reality we currently face is that, at some point, Breast Cancer will impact us all.
Our mothers. Our aunties. Our grandmothers. Our sisters. Our daughters. Our partners. Our friends. Our co-workers. Our kind, familiar strangers. Ourselves. A cancer diagnosis isn’t a solitary one, it’s one that expands into the hearts of those who care for us, too.
Whilst Breast Cancer wasn’t ever part of the plan, it has become part of my world. I am proud of myself, and I endlessly love the community I have become part of. This journey has been an expansion of kindness, a trial of tenderness and patience, and a deep immersion of unconditional love and support that I never knew possible.
Investing in research can save lives and dramatically reduce the most diagnosed form of cancer for women in Australia. On average, 20,000 Australians will be diagnosed with breast cancer, and in the past 10 years, breast cancer diagnosis have increased by 33%. The National Breast Cancer Foundation have a goal of zero deaths by 2023, and only through donations and awareness, we can reach this number together.
This year, the CAMILLA brand will be donating $1 from every online order to the National Breast Cancer Foundation. I encourage you to research, donate and advocate within your own community to strengthen our army of victims and survivors.
Breast cancer doesn’t discriminate, but it sure as hell will bring us together.
Sending you love and light,