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Jenni's Breast Cancer Journey: Radiation and Rockin’ Out

| Date Posted: 10/21/2021

Jenni Abbott’s Facebook profile says, “Wife, Mom, Christ-Follower. Lover of Books, Music, Food and Fun.” In early February 2021, the Southern Pines resident added “Breast Cancer Warrior” to her list of roles and accomplishments…and took her friends on family on a virtual breast cancer journey with her. Jenni graciously agreed for FirstHealth of the Carolinas, where she is a patient, to chronicle her journey through a recreation of her social media posts. She offered raw insights about her experience but always infused optimism and faith. This is the last of seven blogs about Jenni and her breast cancer experience. Read the previous blogs here.

 

August 23

Number One. Today continues my cancer surviving journey - time for radiation! ☢️ I will have 6 weeks of treatment, 5 days a week. Total of 30 treatments. Praying for it to be simple, quick & easy with minimal fatigue and skin irritation.

 

Thank you for joining me in His plans for me! Ladies, take care of your health! Get your mammograms & annual medical checks - you can’t be a great mom or wife without placing value upon yourself! #breastcancerawareness #breastcancerwarrior

 

August 29

💕 This is breast cancer fundraiser that I love! 💕

 

Never thought I’d be a part of the 1 in 8. But that’s part of my story now — and if I can encourage YOU to take care of your health, get an annual mammogram, and learn to remain positive under hard circumstances, it’s the reason I was handed the cup. Not my will, but Yours, Lord.

 

Hope to see you at Dance*Fit for the Cure!

 

August 30

Week 2 of radiation begins today! 6 out of 30 treatments done! ✅

 

Here’s the process: I lay down on the table, put my head & shoulders on my “personalized pillow” and put my arms above my head to hold the handles. The radiation nurses/techs get me into the exact right position so the radiation will avoid my organs and only goes where we want it to. The machine does a scan, verifying I’m in that exact position.

 

The radiologist oncologist approves the scan. And the machine makes a loud beeping sound, making two passes over my body. There is no laser, no heat, no nothing. I just lay there, and the machine does its thing. The side effects are commonly fatigue & possible skin burns. So far, so good. I’m using raw, organic coconut oil as my moisturizer 2x a day. I’m also taking zinc & turmeric. Fingers crossed 🤞🏻 that I don’t burn.

 

September 10

Radiation Week 3, all done! ✅

 

Every day I make my way to FirstHealth and get scanned. The radiation techs/nurses are now my first-name-basis friends. Truly, we have the BEST people here in the Sandhills! I feel blessed to receive this medical care!

 

Side effect wise, I’m getting what I expected. I’ve got some redness & bumps to my upper left quadrant and the fatigue is legit - I take a daily nap! Only 3 weeks to go! 😀

 

September 13

Back at the Cancer Center today for my Phesgo shot! Thankful for Tylenol, Benadryl, fluids and the company of my amazing nurses! This medication specifically targets the HER2+ protein found on my cancer cells.

 

The medication is described to be a “sniper” medicine b/c it only targets the bad cells in my body, no harm to my white blood cells. Y’all know I’m partial to snipers already…. 🎯🥰

 

FirstHealth of the Carolinas’ Cancer Services Team offers people in the Sandhills the medical expertise and advancements usually available only at academic medical centers. Meet our team.

 

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