“Cancer isn’t a death sentence.”

Name: Vicki Fleitz
Age: 54
Job: Certified Pharmacy Technician at La Grange Kroger
Diagnosis: Stage 2 / Stage 3 invasive ductal carcinoma, March 2013
How She Found Out: I did a self-exam, felt the lump where I was then sent for a mammogram that led to me getting a biopsy.
How Did This Change You: I used to be just fine sitting in the back and not being the center of attention, but after my experience in fighting cancer, I began to find my voice and my courage. I have been able to help five friends with their battle with cancer. It helps knowing someone who has gone through it and come out ok. Cancer isn’t a death sentence and I realize I am much stronger than I realized by participating in Derby City Dragons. I am getting stronger mentally and physically and facing my fears.

Advice Vickie Would Give To People With Loved Ones Battling Breast Cancer: Be there for them, even if it is just sending a text message, a card or a phone call. Sometimes being there’s is just as simple as listening. I had friends that cooked meals and brought them to me, some friends just came to visit and be there with me. As a patient, it was nice to know I wasn’t forgotten when people visited or brought me meals and cards. It’s a big morale booster to find a card someone had sent me. I had to learn to let people do things for me.

Best Thing Someone Did For Her During Her Battle: People coming to visit. When I couldn’t go out because I was on chemo and more susceptible to germs, people would come to me. My coworkers were very helpful to me. I tried to work during my chemo, and it didn’t go so well, so they would step in and pick up that slack allowing me to go home and rest. My mom really helped me out as well because when my husband wasn’t there or was out of town for work, she went with me and supported me on my doctor’s visits.When I was in the hospital due to having problems with breathing because of chemo, my sister would come by every day after she got off work to sit with me and talk.

Feel the pink power at our Pink Woman Fashion Show on October 19!

Photo by Melissa Donald