DCMM: This Just In: Breast Cancer Without a Lump

If you are a blog surfer (and since you are here, I am going to assume you are), you have probably seen the button to the left on some of the blogs you visit. You may know what it means, you may not.

WhyMommy is one of the contributors to this blog (you can find her here way down under Sam) and an incredibly brave woman who is fighting a rare form of breast cancer known as IBC or Inflammatory Breast Cancer.

Instead of crawling into her bed and not coming out after getting her diagnosis, WhyMommy has instead not only blogged courageously at Toddler Planet, providing information for those that may follow after her, but she has begun a publicity campaign to tell women about IBC.

You don’t have to have a lump to have breast cancer.

This is what she wants you to know. And this is what she is telling the world. She has been featured on hundreds of blogs, in Parents magazine and their Goody Blog, and most recently FOX News in DC did a substantial piece on her battle for IBC education. You can see it here. It is well worth it. Go watch. I’ll wait.

Perfect, thank you.

Now you know that IBC often presents as mastitis. You know that pain, itching, or heaviness in one breast is a sign of IBC. You know that if your breast is red, hot, or swollen, you should get checked. You know that dimpling of the skin or any change in one breast can mean IBC. You know that breastfeeding moms can get IBC. You know that if your child stops nursing on one side only, you should be aware that something could be wrong.

You know that if your doctor doesn’t bring it up, you should. Because not all doctors have seen it, so not all doctors will diagnose it. If you have been diagnosed with mastitis and one round of antibiotics doesn’t work, then get checked out.

Because time matters with this aggressive disease.

You may have these symptoms and not have cancer. But I don’t think anyone would regret being too careful. I don’t think anyone would regret getting the biopsy and hearing: “Not cancerous.” But a woman would regret ignoring her suspicions and catching IBC too late.

As WhyMommy said in her interview, “I had never heard of [IBC]. And I want you to hear about it.”

If you watched the clip, you also know how beautiful and articulate she is. And how damn adorable her kids are. WhyMommy is my friend. I knew her before she had cancer and I have always thought her to be an amazing person. The way she has dealt with this horrible, shocking slap in the face has been nothing short of inspiring. I’m sure she has her dark moments. Who wouldn’t? But even now she is incredibly vibrant and beautiful. She remains a fully involved parent to her children. She has a light inside her.

Her children are friendly, oh-so-cute boys. They are happy. They are well-behaved. They are sweet. I think she would tell you the same thing. It is a testament to her that she has managed to continue to parent in the same thoughtful manner she did before.

WhyMommy is a lot of things: an advocate, a woman, a mom, a wife, a daughter, a sister, a scientist, a blogger, a woman with cancer. And so much more. Most of all, I think she is a fighter. And that fight in her will help her in every one of those facets of her being.

That fight is helping to save lives—not just her own, but the many she is educating to get fast help when they need it.

Visit WhyMommy at Toddler Planet. Please read her post about IBC. To join Team WhyMommy, please visit Canape.

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