Raquel Soeiro, 34, Breast Cancer Survivor
“The most amazing time of my life”
Raquel Soeiro is a 34-year-old Portuguese expatriate. She is a stay-at-home married mother-of-one who found out she had cancer last year.
THE DISCOVERY: In May 2014 I felt a lump on my left breast. I had an ultrasound and I got the diagnoses: cancer. I was eight weeks pregnant at the time.
THE TREATMENT: Lumpectomy, chemotherapy and 15 sessions of radiotherapy.
THE BEST PIECE OF ADVICE I WAS GIVEN: Always be aware of specific signs, don’t be afraid to know what it is that specific lump you found.
WHAT HELPED ME THROUGH IT: At the time of my surgery and chemotherapy I was pregnant and was pregnant for almost 80 per cent of my cancer treatment. To me, that was my biggest strength — my daughter was a huge rock inside me and along the way I found that I could reach any impossible task. My family, my husband especially, and friends here in Dubai had a major part in it all. Without the help it would have been much more difficult.
WHAT I LEARNED: That nothing is impossible and you never know how strong you are until being strong is the only option you have. I often say that this was the most beautiful and amazing time of my life. I had the chance to meet wonderful people and doctors. Our family got closer and all the small things become secondary. We became alive — more alive than we ever were [before].
HOW LONG I’VE BEEN CANCER FREE: I’m not cancer-free yet, as I have to do ten years of Tamoxifen. But I’ll get there.
MY NEW MOTTO: I found my life motto in the beginning of all this — You never know how strong you are, until being strong is the only option you have.
MY ADVICE TO OTHER WOMEN: Be aware, do your self-exam. Don’t be afraid — the importance of being diagnosed in your early stage determines the treatment and the success. Be positive and, above all, be happy and never give up. Fight.
Source: Gulf News
Published: October 10, 2015