In the ninth episode of [unscripted], we honor Breast Cancer Awareness Month through Micky Stewart. This mom of two talks about her breast cancer diagnosis, her deep faith, how she documented each step of her journey to help other patients with breast cancer, and how she uses her Micky's Tiara platform to inspire others to be fighters.
This is Micky's story, in her own words ... unscripted.
Cincinnati born and raised
Growing up as a child, I lived in Cincinnati. I have three brothers and two sisters. My mom, she would work on the weekends. On the weekdays, like throughout the summer, she would always take us places like we went to a castle one time somewhere or we'd go just do cool activities. She always had something fun planned for us.
My husband and I actually met at my job. This was about almost nine years ago at LensCrafters. He came in to buy glasses and to this day, he's never bought a pair of glasses. But it kind of worked out because he just kept coming back. We built a friendship and then we just realized we had a lot in common and a lot of the same goals. Then that friendship kind of turned into a relationship. Now we've been married five years and we have two kids.
We stress family time, so we love to go to church together, we like to eat together, we like to take the kids to different parks, the Reds games, Kings Island, travel. Those type of things.
The self breast exam that changed everything
I originally found my lump doing a self breast exam. The biopsy was actually what confirmed that I had stage two breast cancer. Everything changed at that point. I began to question life and what was going to happen to me and how this was going to affect my family, and my husband, and my kids. It was a hard time. I was in a very, very trying place for a while.
From that point, it was time to have the referrals to an oncologist to figure out the treatment plan. I have many wonderful things to say about Dr. Robert Cody
, but immediately what I think my husband and I liked about him was he was just so willing to be there for us, answer any questions. Our first visit, I think we stayed maybe 30 minutes or longer, just talking to him. But we were sold. We were like, Dr. Cody is the one that we want to go on this journey with. We trust him and he's gained our confidence. We appreciate that to this day.
Facing treatment and the birth of Micky's Tiara
The treatment plan was to have 16 rounds of chemo and then to do a double mastectomy. It terrified me because I had no idea what it was like to get chemo. I'd heard of it, but I've never experienced it, and 16 sounded like a huge number. I was just wondering like how am I going to get through all of this? And then to know I'm facing this huge surgery right after, I literally had an anxiety attack. Like a huge one. I was in the bathroom on the floor. My husband was in there with me. I had told him about wanting to do Micky's Tiara
, and I just said, "I'm not doing it. I don't know if I can get through this." He said, "No. You're going to do this and we're going to get through it together." Somewhere in that moment, I just started breathing and I found my faith. I said, "You know what? I am going to do this."
Micky's Tiara is just really a way to leave hope for those coming behind me, a way to pass on what I've learned. It's just really taught me to face my fears and my insecurities.
Milestones to celebrate
It just has been a year since my last chemo and I'm in remission. We're all excited about that and celebrating that. My husband and I just celebrated our five-year anniversary, so I'm really happy about that. We took a huge trip and it was amazing.
It just made me look at life so differently. This whole experience has really showed me that our days are numbered on this earth, but it's our decision what we choose to do with each moment. It's actually helped me find my true purpose in life, which is helping women and their families or those impacted by cancer get through this. You have the power to say, "This is not how my life's going to end." You have the power to fight and you have to trust that there's something greater working for your good. Sometimes when everything in life looks like it's falling apart, that's really the universe's way of making everything fall into place. It's all going to work out. You just got to have faith.Click to learn about how our comprehensive cancer program can help you or a loved one.