WASHINGTON (WUSA9) -- For over two decades, WUSA9 has been committed to breast cancer awareness and highlighting our neighbors here in the DC area who are cancer survivors. The stories are featured daily in the month of October on Great Day Washington.
The following story is from Judy Sackheim, a two-time breast cancer survivor who is now a breast cancer ambassador at Suburban Hospital:
"My story as a breast cancer survivor is a twenty-one year journey. Twenty-one years ago I was diagnosed with my first breast cancer. I did well and went on with my life. Three years ago, I was diagnosed with a new breast cancer - not a recurrence - in the same breast. My reaction even surprised me! For most breast cancer survivors, dealing with cancer again is the greatest fear. I stayed calm and immediately accepted advice from the health professionals involved in my treatment. Their knowledge informed mine, they were partners in my decisions, but it was clear I had to make the treatment choices. At times I resented that, as I just wanted to be told what to do for maximum survival. Now I am grateful that I was an active participant in my health.
Of course, along with my doctors, my family was my strongest cheerleaders. All that positive energy stays with me every day!
I believe many of my strengths have surfaced from this journey. I laugh more and even cry more because I am so grateful to be a survivor and share my story along with so many amazing women. In fact, I am a Suburban Hospital Breast Cancer Ambassador so that I can provide encouragement to women who have just been treated for breast cancer at Suburban Hospital. It's a role I find incredibly fulfilling."