Updated: Sep 6, 2022
My name is Bao Tram Nguyen, but everyone calls me Suzy. I am 41 years old, married with two beautiful kids, ages 8 and 14 years old. I know there are millions of similar breast cancer stories, but this is my journey.
In April 2021, I decided to get a mammogram screening to be precautious as I turned 40. A lump was seen in my left breast. A biopsy and MRI were ordered to confirm.
I was diagnosed with stage 2 invasive ductal breast cancer in May 2021. Time stopped. I couldn’t believe it. The news hit me like a punched straight to the gut.
I was sad and in denial. I was down emotionally and mentally. It took me some time to fully grasp the situation. A few weeks went by, and I decided to LIVE. I needed to LIVE for my family. I needed to FIGHT. I stopped feeling sorry for myself and got more information about my diagnosis and the different cancer treatments. The more information I read, the more confident I became that I could beat this cancer.
The Staff at Robert Wood Johnson Steeple Cancer Center were kind, patient, and empathetic. I received top-notch service and care. The plan of attack for my cancer was chemotherapy, surgery then radiation treatment.
I am humbled and grateful for the cancer community! Everyone has been so patient, supportive, and generous.
The chemotherapy was six rounds spread across 18 weeks. Let’s say it was not fun! I had most of the chemotherapy side effects: nausea, joint and muscle pains, headaches, and tiredness. The side effects typically lasted five days. Two weeks after my first chemotherapy session, my hair started to fall out. My husband shaved it off for me. We are now “twinning,” as he would say (note: he was already bald).
The last Chemotherapy was on September 29, 2021. The nurses and staff surprised me with a cake and scarf for my head to celebrate. Everyone was so kind, and it was an emotional day. A day to celebrate the milestone of completing chemotherapy.
In November 2021 surgery was performed to remove the remaining cancer tumor from my left breast and cluster of lymph nodes. It went well and recovery from surgery was much better than recovery from chemo.Now I have begun radiation treatments. I’m hopeful and confident things will be okay and am looking forward to a clean bill of health soon.
Words cannot describe how thankful I am. The generous donation from Dance for the Cure was unexpected. This donation would relieve of my financial burdens, and the generosity of this organization humbles me.
I will be forever part of this cancer community and plan to volunteer and donate what I can in the future so the next patient will feel the love that I do now. Being diagnosed with cancer is scary, but I now know I don’t have to fight it alone! This generous gift from Dance for the Cure means more to me than you will ever know.
From the bottom of my heart Thank you!
Are you or someone you know struggling due to a breast cancer diagnosis?
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