HERStory: Breast Cancer Survivor – ANGIER JOHNSON

October is BREAST CANCER AWARENESS MONTH. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) defines a cancer survivor as anyone who has ever had cancer, from the time of diagnosis through the rest of their life. There are now nearly 12 million cancer survivors in the United States, according to new statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). SexyMomsROCK celebrates the life and continued fight of the mothers, sisters, aunts, and women who survived and continue to thrive despite a breast cancer diagnosis. YOU ARE A SURVIVOR!

Here is the story of Sexy Mom Angier Johnson:

“Montgomery native Angier Johnson, 46, is a four-year breast cancer survivor. A radio broadcaster with a career spanning two decades, she has been known for the past 15 years to listeners of WVAS-FM 90.7 as the “Gospel Messenger.” Here, she shares her story of survival:

In late May of 2005, at the age of 42, I was put in a position where I immediately had to practice what I preach each week. Following a routine mammogram, I was summoned to return to the Montgomery Breast Center to hear, “You have breast cancer.”

Accompanied by my mother, I was stunned to hear the news. I stared straight ahead and felt totally lifeless. I was thinking, “This is a bad dream, a nightmare, and I just need to wake up.” I was a recent divorcee and my mind fell to my two young sons. I thought, “They need me!”

That became the “it” factor. My boys gave me the will to survive, to live, to fight to beat the monster that had the nerve to invade my body. With a doctor and nurse standing by, holding a Kleenex for me, I asked, “What’s next?”

12140634_10206014432692493_1371323418882782752_nWithin an hour I had chosen an oncologist and a surgeon and immediately started putting my treatment plan into action on a Thursday evening. I worked my shift that Sunday morning at the radio station and the next day had surgery, followed by 42 radiation treatments over several months. I have been taking Tamoxifen daily for five years.

My daily prayer was for God to heal me, allow me to see my sons to adulthood, to see my grandchildren and even great-grands, if you please. While I was in the battle of my life, I felt that God had me on assignment and I had to use the vehicle given me — the airwaves — to share his goodness. If he could spare me, he can certainly do the same for others. Breast cancer was my test and beating it has become my testimony!

Today, I feel a sense of obligation to my community to help in the fight against breast cancer, and I seek to fulfill that mission through my radio program. The incidence of the disease is higher among Caucasians than African Americans, but it is African Americans who die from breast cancer in many cases because it is diagnosed at later stages.

 Too often women in my culture allow fear to overcome them. We are afraid of the unknown when the unknown can cause more harm and ultimately kills us. I witnessed this shortly after I was diagnosed. Someone who called to check on me confided that she had not had a mammogram in years and was actually too afraid to go. I begged her to go for me, but more importantly, for herself!

I lend myself to numerous community organizations such as my sorority, Zeta Phi Beta, SISTAS (Sisters In Survivorship Through Action and Support) and Women of Hope, while also spreading the message through my radio program. I reach out to all women but especially to the African American religious community.

My role as a messenger doesn’t just come upon me during October (Breast Cancer Awareness Month). At every opportunity, with audiences large or small, I share my personal experience and message of hope to inspire others.”

If you have a family history of breast cancer or are concerned about your status, perform monthly self exams, know the warning signs, and consult your physician.

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