“She’s a fighter.” You may have heard that statement about someone who has overcome a debilitating illness, and maybe it has been overused, but not in the case of Lynssey Holland.
“Every single day is a fight,” Holland told the Daily Times. “When you look down and you see the scars on your body. When you look down and you see that your breast is gone and you look down and when you have to take that pill every day and you know that pill is preventing you from being able to have a baby, it’s never over. Every day is a fight.”
In April 2013 Lynssey was diagnosed with breast cancer. She endured 20 total weeks of chemotherapy, 33 radiation treatments, had a mastectomy of her left breast as well as a removal of nine axillary lymph nodes. She had the most aggressive chemotherapy which is not endured by most people, but that’s only half the story.
“My life as I knew it did completely stop,” Holland said. “I was basically focused totally on trying to survive. The treatments knocked me down so bad that it was just all I could do to survive.”
Before her diagnosis she and her husband, Todd Holland, were trying to have a third baby.
“It was two miscarriages that alerted me that something was wrong with my body,” Holland said. “That’s when I found the breast lump.”
Now Lynssey takes a pill every day and will for the next 10 years, but that has also led to another realization. She will never be able to have any more children.
Lynssey is a registered nurse who used to work in labor and delivery.
“Being in labor and delivery was just too painful for me, so I had to completely leave my job which was once my passion,” Holland said. “I work in outpatient surgery now and its helping me heal. I miss everybody that I worked with, but it is helping me heal to not be around moms that get to do what I can’t do anymore, what cancer took away from me.”
Holland said Todd has been amazing through the entire process as have her children, Macy, 11 and Drew, 8.
“He has been right there through all of it,” Holland said. “My children have been great. My little girl has been my own little personal nurse. They have absolutely been my reason for fighting and for getting through this because there have been days when I wanted to give up.”
The good news is that Lynssey Holland is cancer free and she readily admits there is always the risk of the cancer coming back.
Holland said her current status is – “trying to pick up the pieces and move on.”
Reach Frank Lewis at 740-353-3101, ext. 1928, or on Twitter @franklewis.