BLUEFIELD — A local breast cancer survivor is sharing her inspirational story with others in hopes of encouraging young women to stay “Pink Strong.”
Stefani Workman, 30, who grew up in Poca and now coaches women’s soccer at Concord University, was diagnosed with breast cancer in June 2013.
“ I very much don’t want it to be personal, I want people to learn from what I went through,” Workman said.
Workman considers herself a young, healthy and active lady.
“I workout and eat healthy,” Workman said.
“I didn’t think being so young I would have cancer,” Workman said. “In March 2013 I found a lump and went to my regular doctor. He felt like I need to see a specialist.
“I made a trip to the West Virginia University Breast Cancer Center,” Workman said. “I had a biopsy, mammogram and ultrasound done.”
Doctors then diagnosed Workman with Ductal carcinoma in situ breast cancer in early June.
After going over options for treatment, she and her doctors decided that having a full mastectomy was her best option, Workman said.
A few appointments later, Workman had her surgery on July 1.
“It was a good two to three week solid recovery period and I returned to work,” Workman said.
Workman will have regular check-ups for the next five years, but is happy to announce that she is cancer free.
“ You need to know your own body, don’t be scared to get checked out. Early detection really helps,” Workman said.
“This has been an experience, but a lesson and a blessing.”
“My girls have been very supportive and I try to encourage them to get checked if they see anything abnormal,” Workman said.
Kari Simon, the leading scorer for Concord, said, “For our team, I think it’s different from a lot of other teams here because our coach has actually suffered from having breast cancer.”
“It’s about her life now. Her life is about that, and she wants people to be aware of (breast cancer). Through her, we can also make people aware, by supporting it, and doing fund-raisers and selling T-shirts and informing people about it — how important it actually is,” Simon said.
Workman and other women of the Concord athletic department have started a logo called “Pink Strong” to help raise money for the WVU Breast Care Center.
— Contact Anne Elgin at firstname.lastname@example.org