Nicole’s story

nicole gallery of hopeWhen I was 16 my mom was diagnosed with inflammatory breast cancer. She fought a three-year battle and passed away in December of 1996. She was the first in the family with breast cancer that we knew of.

In March of 2012 at the age of 34 I found a suspicious lump while doing a self-exam. We had just moved to Arkansas 9 months before. It ended up being stage 3 breast cancer. Through the process I also found myself to be a BRCA2 carrier. I completed four months of chemotherapy, a bilateral mastectomy, a hysterectomy, 6 1/2 weeks of radiation and several surgeries. Throughout my cancer journey I was overwhelmed with the amount of support from my hometown of Tyrone, Pa.

After my diagnosis my friends had quickly put together a walk in my honor. There were baskets raffled, a bake sale and donations were made on my behalf. Not only did this overwhelming amount of support drive me to fight the fight and win, but it also helped my family with some of the financial burdens that a major illness can create. My family and friends were my drive to get through the rough times. They were my inspiration to beat cancer. Today I am doing good and have “no evidence of disease” and I am thankful everyday for this life and the people I have in it.

Thank you,
Nicole Ellenberger Bagley