"Well, you can tell everybody. Yeah, you can tell everybody. Go ahead and tell everybody. I'm the man, I'm the man, I'm the man. Yes I am, yes I am, yes I am..."
Sorry. We've been singing Aloe Blacc's lyrics nonstop for weeks. (Luckily you're reading this and not in earshot!)
See, we're introducing our February survivor, Al Hughes, and he's the man. But that's a given, all our survivors rock. So rewind and focus - HE'S. A. MAN.
We're so excited to welcome our first male breast cancer survivor into this family!
We chatted about men with breast cancer a couple years ago, and as we begin 2019, it's a great time to readdress it, especially now that we have Al to represent for this group.
For comparison purposes, currently the lifetime risk of getting breast cancer for men is about 1 in 833, and if you read our blog you know for women it's roughly 1 in 8. Clearly, there’s less risk for men, but it’s still possible. Al learned this when he became 1 in 833.
With less than one percent of risk, breast cancer was the furthest thing from Al's mind when he felt discomfort in his left breast. Still, once his doctor determined a few small lumps were indeed present, an ultrasound and mammogram soon confirmed a breast cancer diagnosis.
"Me, a male with breast cancer, how is this possible?" he recalled thinking.
But Al has fighter blood.
Not only is he a veteran, he survived 22 years (TWENTY TWO YEARS) of active duty, including the Vietnam War.
In the late 1990s he also survived kidney cancer.
So Al's pretty resilient when it comes to rising to an opponent, especially a repeat challenger.
"I decided I was going to survive this monster called cancer again by doing my research on healthy living while battling this terrible disease,” he said. “I continue to fight."
(We told you he was the MAN!)
After facing off with yet another life or death experience, Al continues to appreciate the moment.
"Tomorrow is not promised," he said. "Make every living day count and spend as much time as you can with your loved ones."
Further, Al advises us all to pay attention
"Remember that if you feel something or suspect something, say something, it could save your life."
We agree! Thank you Al and we are so thankful to have you in our family!
Until next time all, keep your Eye on Strength!