By Smarty Guest Blogger, Michelle Rogers, owner of Miller Street Dance Academy
As we move into Breast Cancer Awareness Month it brings about many emotions for me. As many of you know, I am now a 7-year survivor of this dreaded disease. I was diagnosed and cured in the month of October in 2007. At the time my daughter, Natalie, was only 8 years old, and I knew nothing mattered more than making really good decisions that would help to ensure a great outcome.
After spending the month of September at numerous appointments and biopsies, I was worried. The horrible call came on October 9th. My first reaction was to leave town, take care of it and then return to business as usual. Since that was not a realistic option, I decided to use this as a chance to preach early detection and make the Miller Street world aware of how important that is. I found the first cancer site myself – there were 4 total when everything was said and done.
As I prepared for my bi-lateral mastectomy (removal of both breasts), I had to keep all these little people who look up to me from being afraid and making everything as positive as possible.
It worked!! On October 30th I was cancer free. I have never been so excited, and I knew then how it must feel to win the lottery! As I had prayed for that great news, I promised that if God would grant me this prayer I would shout early detection from every roof top in order to help as many people as possible -and that is exactly what I have done.
Both of my grandmothers were breast cancer survivors, so I knew that I could get this disease and always watched myself closely. I encourage you to do this. I had missed my mammogram that March and never thought twice about it. The card never came in the mail so it just slipped my mind. Don’t make that mistake.
I was confident in thinking that I probably would not get breast cancer because I am active, young (37 at the time), eat fairly clean and don’t smoke. Don’t make that mistake. Cancer knows no age or life style.
As I celebrate my 7th year of good health I have been blessed to meet and encourage many people around the nation. Not all of these friends have made it, and nothing destroys me more than watching a child suffer the loss of their mother to this awful disease.
Recently I was honored with an endowment through The Circle Of Hope in Los Angeles, CA. I am sending this endowment to a dance teacher friend of mine that lives in Southern California and has been fighting this disease for 6 years. I pray for her every day to beat this. I have now been asked by this organization to become and ambassador for the Circle of Hope for 2015. The greatest blessing in this will be the funds I can raise for this organization. They don’t keep any administration fees – it all goes to fight cancer.
As we go through this dance year we will be doing fundraisers of all types, and will have our annual charity Team Show on June 19th at 7:00pm at Elevation. Mark your calendars! This will be an amazing night of dancing and fundraising, and it will be a great night for a family outing!
Thank you for choosing Miller Street and for all of your support over the years with the hundreds of community service projects we have hosted, promoted and participated in over the years. Without you, we wouldn’t get much done – As a group we are a huge force for making a difference.
Many blessings have come my way in life, and my health is one of them. I am proud to say that I, like you, am here watching my dancer Natalie is now 15), do what she loves on stage and am able to assist her in projects and service work. Together, we are shaping our children to be socially responsible citizens with a passion for making a difference!
Thank you to Michelle for sharing your story of early detection with Smarty Charlotte! Miller Street Dance Academy is located at the intersection of Providence Road and Ardrey Kell Road in Charlotte and Baxter Village in Fort Mill. Find more information on their website or Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.