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Buddy Check 3

Buddy Check 3

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Buddy Check3 (Young Mom Beats Breast Cancer Twice)

Updated: Tuesday, March 19 2013, 11:01 AM CDT
The average age for a breast cancer diagnosis is 60 years old.

So imagine being half that age.... the mother of a toddler.... and getting the news.

In today's Buddy Check Three, Kathryn Daniel introduces us to a local woman faced with that scenario.

Nancy Balk says when she was in her twenties and early thirties, she never did self breast exams...Except one night, out of the blue she did...And felt a small lump.

She turned to her best friend, who was also 31 and a recent breast cancer survivor.

Nancy Balk; "At eleven o'clock at night I called her up, you know. Just frantic about it and she said, oh, it's probably nothing and I told her that it hurt and she said, oh, they don't hurt, but it's just a cyst."

It wasn't -- it was indeed a malignant tumor.

Nancy Balk; "I have a two year old, that was the last thing I was thinking about."

What she was thinking about was hopefully having another baby...After a lumpectomy and radiation, she was ready.

Many doctors told her not to.

But her oncologist had other advice.

Nancy Balk; "He said, 'You know, you can't let this rule your life. He said, 'You need to lead your life and if you want another baby you need to have one so the next time I saw him I was eight months pregnant."

Nancy and her husband welcomed Joshua -- and for almost four years all was well.

This past August, Nancy had a "clean" mammogram...In January of this year, the news wasn't so great.

The cancer had returned in the same breast, same spot.
She opted to immediately have a radical masectomy.

Nancy Balk; "I'm here for my boys and for my family. I just didn't have any more time to fool with cancer, I'm done with it."

She's back to work partime at Lollipop's Children's Consignment store...Employer Donna Bowes says Nancy's battle prompted her to action...Self breast exams are part of her regular routine -- and that's not all...

Donna Bowes; "I went for my first mammogram this year, so it kinda pushed me, it was a wake up call."

Nancy has a family history of other kinds of cancer.

Nancy Balk; "I need to know, and I'm actually having a PET scan done which is where they scan your whole body for cancer, because I need to know."))

So much so -- she's having genetic testing done to find out if she's at even further risk..

Nancy Balk; "I'm actually looking forward to it, let's get it done, I'm a, let's get it done and move on."

For more information on Buddy Check Three....

And resources available for breast cancer patients....log on to our website, click on "Buddy Check Three".....Buddy Check3 (Young Mom Beats Breast Cancer Twice)

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