PUBLISHED ON: 7 September 2020

Laura found a lump when studying for exams at dental school. She returned to university after her treatment. She shares how her diagnosis changed her confidence for the better.

Laura for Fashion Targets Breast Cancer

I found my lump whilst studying for exams

I found the lump in 2018 when I was studying for my exams at dental school. I powered through my exams and went on holiday. When I came back, I felt the lump again.

I decided to get it checked out. Initially, I was told it was potentially just a cyst, but then I got referred to the local breast care unit where I had further biopsies and ultrasounds.

I went back two weeks later, and they told me that I had breast cancer.

It was completely surreal. I was being told that I had a disease that could potentially change my life for ever.

The drive home was an out of body experience. There was a lot to process.

I went back and finished my final year after surgery

I was diagnosed at the end of my second year at university. It was very touch and go throughout the whole of summer as to whether I would be able to continue with my final year.

My university was great and said they’d support me going forwards. I had my surgery on my second day of my final year and only took two weeks off.

 I went back a bit sooner than I probably should have, but as soon as I was given NED status my consultant said ‘go away, graduate and bring me your graduation photos when I see you in six months’. And that’s what I did.

Everybody was so supportive. I spent a lot of time with my girlfriends as I didn’t always have the energy to go out. We would buy matching pyjamas and have girls' nights in.

The Breast Cancer Now website helped me, my friends and my family

I used the Breast Cancer Now website a lot during treatment. I was also studying whilst at home, so I was able to read information about my diagnosis, treatment and aftercare at my own pace.

I found it so helpful, not only for me but for my friends and family. They all wanted to support me the best way they could, so it was great to have someone to direct them too,

I’m a lot more confident now

I feel that I’m a lot more confident after my diagnosis. I know who I am and what I want now.

I think realising that life is too short is what’s changed my outlook. I know it’s cliché but there’s no guarantee. You’ve just got to do everything you can to make yourself happy and if you’re not happy – change it.

I feel like I’m part of a really strong powerful group of women

I’m really honoured to be a part of Fashion Targets Breast Cancer. I’m proof that breast cancer does affect young women, but I’m also proof that you can come out the other side a better person.

It’s been amazing to meet other women who have had similar experiences to me. I feel like I’m part of a really strong, powerful group.

When I was going through treatment, I didn’t meet a lot of younger women, so it’s been great to meet the other women in the campaign and have a laugh and a giggle.

 

Fashion Targets Breast Cancer by Breast Cancer Now is calling on you to wear something important. To wear something that helps fund life-changing care and world-class research.

Every piece sold from our Fashion Targets Breast Cancer collection with River Island helps Breast Cancer Now to continue to be here for anyone affected by breast cancer. Now more than ever, we must do all we can to support patients and their families through whatever they’re facing.

You can help to make that happen.

Wear something important.

Fashion Targets Breast Cancer