Kendal Smiley was a healthy young woman with a goal of becoming a professional bodybuilder. She was maintaining a very healthy diet, exercised regularly and had been active in many athletic activities.
Despite her incredibly healthy life, one day after dislocating her shoulder, she discovered a lump on her breast. The biopsy showed that at age 37 she was facing with breast cancer, stage I.
But Smiley didn’t let this horrible news to bring her down and had decided to fight with a positive attitude. It didn’t prevent her to continue with her wedding plans and walked down the aisle in a designer wig.
Later she learned about the American Cancer society where she met a breast cancer survivor at their Reach To Recovery program. This program gives opportunities to the breast cancer patients and their family to inform themselves about the condition, to express their feelings, fears and concerns. “Sometimes you just need to talk to someone who’s been there,” Smiley said.
Through the fundraising community Making Strides Against Breast Cancer, Smiley has connected with many people and Is a part of this community. “It’s like being part of a sorority that I didn’t sign up for, and I’m in,” Smiley said. “I’m all in!”
As a Team Leader and committee member for the event in Barnstable, Massachusetts, this brave young woman has recruited 54 people to join her team and help fundraise.
“You really learn that you’re not alone from the events,” said Smiley. “There are people going through the same thing, and they understand the fight. You’ll see that the disease affects so many people.”
This October the American Cancer Society will hold nearly 300 Making Strides events in communities across the country, and it’s not too late to get involved.