My life has been filled with ups and downs From being a Dallas Cowboy Cheerleader for 4 seasons to battling an eating disorder that nearly took my life in 2000 and successfully overcoming it.
But I never knew that my 1st act would begin on October 1 2011, for both the good and the bad. I had gone in for my 6 month mammogram. I had being given a 40th birthday present from mom of being tested to see if I carried the BRCA gene after knowing that my grandmother my mom and her twin sister 2 cousin’s and two other relatives had breast or ovarian cancer. I did carry the BRCA ER positive 2 gene.
The Dr. called me and told me I needed to come in right away, I knew I had BC. they first thought it was dci 1 but it wasn’t turn out when I had a double mastectomy we found out I had stage 3c invasive ductal carcinoma.
My fight was long and I knew this would forever change my life. Through 3 different rounds of chemo all 16 weeks and over 96 rounds of radiation, I never gave up. Having my port become infected and being replaced 3 times to finding more cancer and undergoing more surgery after surgery. But I knew I had to fight like a girl!!
I had watch my mom Marla Sue Mason battle stage 4 metastatic breast cancer for over 18 years coming back 4 times but she never gave up. She volunteered at the center where she was receiving treatment and would tell everyone I don’t have a terminal illness I have a chronic illness that can be managed with treatment. And faith. SHE LOST HER BATTLE ON FEBUARY 24, 2014.
In Sept. of 2014 my life would begin its 2nd act.
My Drs.. Informed me that my cancer had mastasized to my bones and I was told 2 to 4 years maybe. Yes I had my why me pity party that night but at 2 am I woke up and had 2 visions. I had heard about 3 weeks earlier from a woman named Gina sheets who was the marketing director at Banner Lake Imaging in Sun City. A new type of mammogram 3d digital tomography and it was reducing call back by 40% and catching breast cancer up to 18 months earlier than a normal 2d mammogram
I also learned it cost a woman without insurance $111.00 to have this latest new mammogram. I stared writing down cost time this times that and REBA’S VISION WAS BORN. I thought if we could raise 3000.00 we could maybe save 25 women from what I and so many others have gone thru. I also want to help women currently in treatment feel beautiful by providing them with a Basket of Hope which comes from their surrounding community filled with books hats makeup jewelry anything the give Them Hope. I had been given such items while I was undergoing my treatment. With the help of Gina, my friend Eileen Joy, my place of work at the time Texas Roadhouse Peoria we turned the Roadhouse Pink. The community got behind us and helped us that month we raised over $. 29,000 Little did I know that 2 years later were at nearly 100,000.00 with donations from strangers, to corporations such as Walmart and our never ending fundraising events.
I am so excited that 100 women so far have used the Pink Roadhouse Mammo Fund, and over 75 Hope Baskets have been handed out. During our fundraising events I have had the pleasure of meeting so many women living their 2nd act. They are loving life and they bring a smile to my face listening to them talking about their journey and hearing about how bc changed their life for the good by giving their 2nd act.
My 2nd act now continues now by providing free wigs, bra, prosthetics, hats, and scarves, anything a woman needs while in treatment for any form of cancer at no cost to them, thru generous donations from women who have been there and survived. To see the smile on the faces of women trying on a wig and feeling human once again to helping a young mother with children smile when she receives her Basket filled with items from you and others who understand, then seeing her smile thru the tears of pain , I know she will be stronger and will beat cancer.
My 2nd act is still going strong with the amazing support of my husband Steve who I met while battling cancer and married 16 months ago, to my family, and countless friends, business owners and especially one woman my amazing angel my mom.
I’m Ready to begin my 3rd act now not letting a little thing called cancer beat me
FIGHT LIKE A GIRL
REBA MASON -MIKUTOWICZ