One in eight women are affected by breast cancer, and this year alone, it is estimated to take the lives of nearly 50,000 women in the U.S. and Canada. In fact, breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in women. The good news is there are over 3.8 million breast cancer survivors in the United States and Canada so that means there is hope. It also means we have a lot of work to do. A breast cancer diagnosis can be devastating for a woman and will change her life in countless ways from depression and anxiety to body image issues.
At Plunder we have been helping women for over 8 years. We are committed to helping them find the beauty inside themselves and others through our mission to FIND HER. That unapologetic, gutsy girl who lives inside her. The one who dreams big, believes in herself and helps others achieve their dreams.
TWO WAYS TO PARTICIPATE
1. You can purchase product from our Pink Collection. A portion of the proceeds from our pink collection will be donated to this year’s recipients.
2. Each year Plunder selects donation recipients based on nomination submissions. If you or someone you know has been diagnosed with breast cancer submit a nomination for a chance to be selected.
In our quest to empower women, it was clear we needed to join the fight against breast cancer. We want to help women not only survive but thrive after recovery. Since our first sale in 2014, we’ve partnered with multiple charities and individuals to help women get much needed breast health education, screenings and treatment. In addition, donations have assisted survivors pay medical bills and regain their confidence as they rediscover their innate beauty and confidence so they can continue to be that gutsy, unapologetic girl.
The one who continues to dream big, believe in herself and help others achieve their dreams.
MEET THIS YEARS RECIPIENTS
A year ago one of my worst fears was confirmed. I had breast cancer and was only 28. The scars I carry are definitely still raw in places. It can be hard to except the journey I was given even a year later, but I’ve gained so much and I hope sharing my journey continues to help others. Learn to give yourself some grace, you’ll learn so much about the incredible strength you have within. Don’t let others tell you it’s just hair, It’s a part of your identity, but it will grow back. Your identity will change. You are allowed ot mourn that, but you learn to love all of the amazing qualities about yourself that leavethose around you in awe. Your body will change immensely but wear those battle scars proudly. You conquered every foe that left a mark. You’ll meet so many amazing people on this journey. You’ll learn to let go of the toxic and embrace your tribe. A massive tribe you didn’t know you needed. Let them carry you when you struggle because you will bounce back eventually and can return that love. Finally., don’t let cancer define you. Let it change your outlook. Be sad. Scream. Let it challenge everything you thought you knew about life and yourself. But grow and change into an even better version of you; even if you aren’t who you thought you’d be. You might surprise you in the best of ways.
In the month of October Beezy went in for a regularly scheduled mammogram. Praise god she did not neglect to love herself in that way. The results came back that she has stage 1 breast cancer. Her doctors confirmed that she will need surgery and the hope is that the surgery does not exceed a lumpectomy, followed by radiation. Beezy and her husband are incredibly hard working citizens and have had unexpected difficulties. When life throws a curveball, there is no greater feeling that feeling the support of thoes who love you. Unless you have been through it personally, you cannot comprehend the magnitude of thoughts taht go through your mind and pierce your heart as you begin your cancer journey. Not everyone who has been diagnosed with breast cancer has a happy ending, but supporting a loved one through their journey is the best and most important way we can help them to feel that they are not alone.
Tara’s breast cancer journey has just begun actually. Tara is my cousin and we aren’t as close as we used to be growing up, unfortunately life gets in the way of spending time with each other. Growing up we were raised as close as sisters. We would build forts, have snowball fights, go sledding and made tons of memories. I love Tara and just want her to know how much she is loved. Support your friends and loved ones through all trials in life. Especially support them dealing with cancer, but we should support them through life in general. We all need support at some time or another, for one reason or another. Even if we don’t know that someone is going through a trying time we should take the time to show our love, support, kindness and compassion. We can show this be simply checking in on them, sending a messae, calling and sending a special gift. Don;t let life get in the way of freindships, family and lifelong memories.
Kayla recently underwent a double mastectomy at the age of 27. She is a single mom and is also trying to preserve and some of her her viable eggs for the future. She is strong and has had such a battle and has fought very hard to be in the best health she can be in for her little boy and for her.
MEET LAST YEARS RECIPIENTS
I would like to believe that cancer has made me a better person. I am more aware of how I react to things and situations. I treasure the time I spend with everyone that is present in my life. I have more patience and compassion for everyone in my life. I strongly believe that everyone is fighting their own battles and we should not judge a person if we have not walked in their shoes. The most impactful thing I have learned is that time is precious, and you should never take it for granted. When I was diagnosed at my present stage and was given a terminal prognosis that changed everything. Work is no longer that same priority, the most important things in my life are my family and friends.
After my 38th birthday, one week later I found a large lump in my right breast. Quickly, I was sent off for mammograms, ultrasounds and biopsies only to reveal that I was going to need chemotherapy. (6 rounds which ended August 2nd), a double mastectomy with reconstruction (September 22nd), implant exchange surgery (December 22nd), a year of immunotherapy, and 5-10 years of ovary suppression and aromatase inhibitor meds. All of this while raising 3 young girls. I haven’t worked as of April 2021 with no return to work date as of yet. It’s required help from all of my friends and family to help me get through it all. Don’t ever expect to know or understand how hard this battle is. Treatment alone is no joke. Chemotherapy will knock anyone down, take that along with surgery stealing away your womanly features, hair loss making you feel less than and you’re only scratching the surface. Just listen instead. Pray hard for the person, comfort them and hear them. Acknowledge that you cannot imagine how they are feeling, offer a hug, a meal, love and prayers. That’s all that is needed.
I would consider myself a Triple Negative Breast Cancer Warrior. I am 4 years now without evidence of disease but the fight never ends and the side effects and scars are forever. I’m so grateful to be alive and the journey shaped my life in new ways teaching me to live for today. My deep faith, my family support, amazing friends and co-workers made my journey endurable. God was my rock and m joy when I struggled. I thought cancer would be a bump in the road, that I would do the treatments and life would go back to normal but that is sadly not the case for so many of us. I have lasting side effects from chemo (heart damage and neuropathy). Then 10 months after treatments it came back in three new places and so I had a mastectomy with many complications Then DIEP flap reconstruction which came with even more complications which turned into many surgeries. I’m left with very undesirable scarred results that requires the use of a prosthesis. So it’s been a difficult journey to accept my new body. Now that I have a horrible hernia that the surgeon says it too large to repair so I live in binders.
I wish others could realize that the treatments leave you with lasting side effects that drastically change your life. they can support us by continuing to support us after we look healthy on the outside becasue the neuropathy, heart damage, brain fog, and other effects are not noticeable from the outside. I’m grateful for people learning to bemore careful about washing hands and staying home when sick. It’s so important to keep those of us with weak immune systems from treatment safter. Most of all women need to get screened for mammograms and a physical examination. Early detection will save lives.
When facing breast cancer the first week was a blur and took awhile to sink in. Then one day I was like I can’t change this, there is only two things I can do, either I can be sad or I can live each day and be happy. So being that I couldn’t change what was going on I decided I needed to deal and live my day. Because of this I went a lot of the time with people not even realizing I had cancer, many times people would say I would have never known. I chose to be happy no matter what and not think about the bad or whatever obstacle happened. Once I did this and made my decision I was better prepared to handle what breast cancer throws at you. Surgeries, treatments, radiation and the after effects of radiation, the ongoing medical appointments and daily visits to the hospital. I am now at 4 surgeries, my third bilateral mastectomy, my fourth was an emergency surgery. Though they are gone, I still will have appointments and treatments for the next 20 years. It can be scary but I remind myself that I got this, that there is someone somewhere in a worse situation than me. That all 6 of my children need me to be happy right now, and most importantly that I choose to be in charge even with something that is trying to control my life and make me sick.
Having breast cancer has changed me in many ways, life is not easy with medical issues and that was something I did not know until I had cancer. When you think of an illness you think of the person being in a hospital but you don’t think about everything that surrounds that and the toll it takes on family, friends, finances, emotions and you physically. I have learned that it is important to live the day, to live the moment, and enjoy every single minute. I have learned that when someone says they are dealing with an illness or issue I see and understand all that comes with it. I changed my mind set from building for the future to being in the now with my family and children.