Breast Cancer Awareness Month #ThisDuckWearsPink #ad @AflacDuck

This year I just turned 27 years old and I'm starting to feel it. I always seem to have an ailment and I'm in the doctor's office much more than anyone my age should be. Unfortunately, I just wasn't born with very good health genes so right now I'm going through a lot of different testing to see what is making me so sick every day. And one of those tests I had done this week was an ultrasound because my doctor felt something funny during my checkup. 

In the above picture is my grammy and me when I was about 7 years old. I never knew my grammy very well because we moved across the country when I was a kid. So when we would go back home on vacation, we would visit her. But one thing I do remember about her is my dad telling me she had breast cancer. 

I never knew that breast cancer was in our family until then. But those thoughts kept going through my head this week when I went to get my ultrasound. It was already a scary thought that my doctor wanted an ultrasound but when I got into the radiology department and saw all the breast cancer awareness posters, I got even more scared. 

When I went into the room to have my ultrasound, I wasn't very relaxed at all. I wanted to get in and out as quickly as possible. And it didn't help that my tech wanted to take extra shots of my underarms as well just in case. That made me start having thoughts flood through my mind. 

I can honestly say that it's not a fun wait to hear back about your ultrasound results. But when my doctor actually called my house the next day to talk to me, I was terrified. The first thing that went through my mind was, "I have cancer." But thankfully, she had called to tell me everything looked good and not to worry. But what if I really had gotten cancer? 

I think back about my grammy and how scared she must have been to learn she had breast cancer. I can't imagine going through that, especially by myself. 

Breast cancer is the second most common kind of cancer in women, with skin cancer being the first. And about 1 in 8 women born today in the U.S. will get breast cancer at some point in their lives. That's a scary thought.

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the annual campaign to increase awareness of the disease, offer information and support to those affected by breast cancer and raise funds for research into its cause, prevention, diagnosis, treatment and cure.

The American Cancer Society recommends the following for early breast cancer detection in women without breast symptoms:
  • Women age 40 and older should have a mammogram every year and should continue to do so for as long as they are in good health. 
  • Women in their 20s and 30s should have a clinical breast exam (CBE) as part of a periodic (regular) health exam by a health professional preferably every 3 years. 
  • Breast self-exam (BSE) is also an option for women starting in their 20s.

For Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Aflac will be partnering with the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) again for its second annual “This Duck Wears Pink” campaign. Aflac is selling a variety of campaign-related merchandise including the plush duck, hats and a breast cancer ribbon pin, with all the net proceeds going to the AACR for the specific purpose of funding research aimed at finding a cure for breast cancer.

These are just a few things to think about during this Breast Cancer Awareness Month and I hope that you take part of it with me.

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.