“Hi! My name is Lauren. I have been married for 3.5 years and I have a two year old son.”
My name is Lauren Tarpley and I am a mother, wife, daughter, sister, friend and a published author. I work in Corporate Social Responsibility and I have a moonlight parenting podcast called, “Life with Little Ones.” I was diagnosed with Stage 2 Her2+, Hormone Receptor negative and BRCA negative Invasive Ductal Carcinoma Breast Cancer at the age of 34 on September 4th, 2020.
My cancer was detected with an annual mammogram and a self exam. I was getting annual mammograms from the age of 30 but I was also having a lot of pain in my armpit. I personally believe that self exams are of the utmost importance because you need a baseline to identify changes. Regular screenings are important bc there are areas of concern that you won’t always be able to find with a self exam alone. Specifically, my cancer lived in calcifications which were undetectable by a self exam. Regular screenings and self exams can catch cancer in its early stages and therefore can save your life. In the last 55 weeks I have completed six rounds of [TCHP] chemo therapy, a double mastectomy with reconstruction, multiple surgeries, 25 rounds of radiation and 11 rounds of immunotherapy. I am finished with active treatment but still have reconstruction surgeries to go. My family, friends and virtual friends have been amazing. I looked everywhere when I was diagnosed for community and information. I never imagined I would find such close friends online. Tiger Lilly, Livestrong and BRCA Strong are great resources for information and assistance. I have also written a book as a one stop shop for information, Type A Guide to Cancer. It’s the book I would have liked to use as a reference after my own diagnosis.