Breast Cancer Awareness Month began in October. Screenings are recommended every other year, beginning at age 40, according to the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force.
“Most breast cancers are found in women who are 50 years old or older,” per information provided by the CDC.
Dominique Jones, a survivor of life’s twists and turns, knows that there are exceptions to statistical odds. The first mammogram that the Severn, Maryland resident ever had in her life revealed that she had breast cancer. Jones was just 37 years old.
“I had a biopsy done on December 5, 2013, which returned a diagnosis of a cancer called dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans of the trunk,” Jones said.
The single mother of five had always been a healthy person, but one day she discovered a lump in her right breast the size of a lemon, after showering. It took her a week or two to take a trip to the doctor. Her daughter’s grandmother urged her to go. Jones feared that she had cancer, but she followed through with seeking medical attention. Unfortunately, biopsy results revealed that she did have breast cancer.
Upon learning about her medical diagnosis, Jones stated that she was confused and devastated.
“I had children and responsibilities to take care of. Mentally, my thoughts were clouded thinking about the fate of my future.”
Jones stated that her parents— Carl and Sharon Jones – responded by informing their daughter that she should not worry about anything. They would step in and take care of whatever was needed.
“All my family was very supportive, even my siblings,” Jones said.
Destiny was gracious to Jones.
“There was no treatment needed. I was diagnosed quickly and immediately was scheduled for surgery. After two surgeries [the first one on January 10, 2014 and the second one on January 24, 2014], the cancer was finally removed from my breast,” Jones said.
Breast cancer had not been Jones’ only obstacle. She had previously been through another life altering event. She endured a period of wanting to take her own life. According to Jones, a portion of her emotional turmoil was rooted in her then nine-year-old daughter informing her that she was molested in 2010. Jones sought therapy for a year.
After situations coming up back-to-back, Jones grew to feel even more that she was living for a reason. Jones decided that a person determines how to finish his or her story. The resilient survivor noted that life can get better. Today, Jones is a small business owner who is the proprietor of YouNiquely Chosen Body Contouring, in addition to working in other professions.
She decided to live and heal, teaching others to speak out and share their story to help the next person. Jones also felt empowered by publishing “Shattered My Silence” in 2016 to share her journey.
“My book is an autobiography of my pain, hurt and trauma becoming my testimony,” Jones said.
She further explained that she shares how she lived through challenging experiences. Fortunately, breast cancer has not returned.
“I’m in great spirits, sharing my testimonies whenever I can. As for breast cancer, I am in remission and have been since 2014. Thank God!”
She added, “My purpose in life after going through so much was to be a voice and to advocate for people who didn’t have the strength to speak on their own tragedy to healing. In doing so, I could help so many people take steps in healing through their abuse and struggles.”
Jones also explained that she takes time for herself, even if it is just to take a drive and speak to God. Surrounding herself with others who pour into her positivity and healing is also a way that she celebrates the positive strides that she has made over time.
Fear of hearing bad news can hinder people from taking action with health concerns. However, Jones’ story about beating breast cancer is a reminder that going to the doctor and getting regular checkups is very important. It could be a life-saving measure.
“We must be mindful of our bodies. At times it tells us to get checked and we ignore ours. You can do your breast self-exams,” Jones said. “Let’s stop and take care of ourselves because who else is going to do it for us?”
Learn more about Jones’ book via https://lbpub.com/product/shattered-my-silence-by-dominique-jones/ or by searching for the author through www.lbpub.com.