Green Country Woman Celebrates Milestone in Her Breast Cancer Treatment
TULSA, Oklahoma - For many breast cancer patients, besides surgery, chemotherapy is one of the most powerful tools used in the fight.
It usually involves many months of going in for treatment so when that part of the journey is over, it's a milestone to be celebrated as we get ready to Race for the Cure in Tulsa this year.
This is a big day for Shari Garcia, her last chemotherapy treatment in her battle against breast cancer.
"I have so many emotions, excitement, joy you know I've come this far I feel great I've beat it... relief I'm not coming back," said Shari Garcia.
Last year, Shari felt a lump her in breast. She knew she had her annual checkup in January so she just waited to say anything until the appointment. Her doctor ordered a mammogram and an ultrasound. Once the radiologist read the mammogram, Shari was given the news.
"And she said okay, this is a bad boy and we need to take care of it. It's not a death sentence but you hear those words and everything shuts down. I could hear her talking but in my mind I'm like am I going to die?" said Shari Garcia.
Shari and her family along with her doctor came up with a plan. A double mastectomy, followed by chemo and eventually reconstruction.
"After my crying spell and all that I kind of got the attitude that I had to stay positive you know and we'll get through whatever. Looking back, I remember you going through it and I thought how brave you were and everything you went through I mean you were like my inspiration, great now you're going to get me crying and that was not part of the deal," said Shari Garcia.
About two weeks after Shari started her chemo, her hair began to thin and eventually fall out.
"And so my niece, I told her one night, ok shave it and she's like are you serious you want me to do that and I said shave it off let's do it and so I haven't looked back since," said Shari Garcia.
But this journey hasn't been easy.
"It's devastating. You take a look at everything and you never expect it to be part of your family I've never really dealt with the cancer issues with anybody. It was eye opening," said Shari Garcia.
On this, her last day of chemo, it is truly a day of celebration. As is tradition at this facility, each patient gets the chance to ring the bell, signaling the end of treatment.
On this day, Shari's family and friends surprised her for the celebration, showing her how proud they are of her courage and determination with tears of joy and thankfulness.
Shari has already registered for the upcoming Susan G Komen Race for the Cure Set for Saturday, September 26 at ONEOK Field. If you'd like to form a team or join mine, go to NewsOn6.com/LeAnne's Team.