Living with Breast Cancer: One Woman’s Story
Digital Education Programming Presented by the
Center for Health & Wellbeing
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, but you probably already knew that. There aren’t many people who haven’t seen the pink ribbon symbol and aren’t immediately aware of its significance. But did you know that Stage IV Metastatic Breast Cancer (MBC) is the only stage of breast cancer that is 100% fatal? Despite that, there are the over 155,000 men and women in the United States living with MBC every day.
Program presenter Abigail Johnston, Esquire, is one of those people. In this program, you’ll join Abigail to hear her inspiring story of living with a purpose and learn more about the research critical to the diagnosis and treatment of Breast Cancer. You’ll also uncover the definition of ‘pinkwashing’ and learn some of the language and sensitivities for those men and women living with MBC.
About Your Program Presenter
Abigail Johnston is a daughter, mother, wife, and attorney who was diagnosed with Metastatic Breast Cancer in June of 2017, close on the heels of an early stage diagnosis in March of 2017. In reality, the breast cancer had already spread to Abigail’s bones before she felt the lump in her breast. The first few months after her diagnosis were a whirlwind and full of many profound changes, but Abigail soon found her footing and started her blog “No Half Measures,” where she talks about whatever comes to mind, within the lens of her Stage IV diagnosis. Abigail’s boys, Liam and Malcolm, who were nearly 2 and nearly 4 at the time of her diagnosis, along with her husband, Elliot, make their own appearances in Abigail’s advocacy since it truly is a family affair. In 2017, Abigail discovered that she inherited the ATM mutation and further testing has revealed other somatic mutations; this is now her focus of research and she bugs her doctors regularly with articles and new information.
For Abigail, advocacy is a whole life endeavor and she never does anything halfway. Abigail works with Metavivor as a Peer to Peer Advocate, with Living Beyond Breast Cancer as a Hear My Voice Advocate, with After Breast Cancer Diagnosis (ABCD) and she started her own non-profit, Connect IV Legal Services, to recruit attorneys to do pro bono legal work for Stage IV metastatic breast cancer patients. Abigail is an active member of her local support group, Y2B2 which is geared towards younger women with all kinds of cancer and is a co-administrator of a metastatic breast cancer community, Living Metastatic One Day at a Time, where she helps to organize the “Sister Buddy” program so that no member feels isolated or alone. Outside of cancer advocacy, Abigail serves as a room mom for her boys’ teachers and is a board member of her local PTA, serving as a Parliamentarian.
She can be found via social media on her blog, “No Half Measures,” as well as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Outside of her cancer life, Abigail enjoys spending time with her family and cat, scrapbooking, cross-stitching and dreaming up more ways to experience life with her boys.