April Educator of the Month

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Meet Paige Shafer

“Between the incredible Know Your Lemons graphics and the app it’s hard NOT to know what you should be doing and feeling for every month.”

 

In 2019, when Paige was only 26 years old, she found a lump on her breast while recovering from foot surgery at home. She initially wrote it off as a cyst since both her and her mom had regularly found cysts while growing up. Due to her surgery and her husband’s frequent travel, Paige had to wait for her annual OB-GYN visit for four months to get the lump checked more thoroughly. Her gynecologist was suspicious of the lump almost immediately and scheduled Paige for an ultrasound right away. Paige received a biopsy that afternoon, and she was told she’d hear back in seven to ten days. When she received a call from her doctor barely 24 hours later, “I knew something was wrong,” Paige says.  

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The next 40 days were a slew of consultations, counseling sessions, appointments, and tests before speaking to an oncologist to devise a treatment plan and “figure out what was about to happen in my life,” Paige says. Since then, she has received six rounds of high-dose chemotherapy, bilateral mastectomy, and 25 rounds of radiation. 

In the midst of all of this upheaval, Paige stumbled upon the Know Your Lemons Foundation in February 2020. While finishing up her high-dose chemotherapy, Paige began turning to social media to share her journey and make connections, which is how she found the #knowyourlemons campaign. Paige said:

“Between the incredible Know Your Lemons graphics and the app it’s hard NOT to know what you should be doing and feeling for every month. While a monthly self exam wouldn’t have prevented my cancer, it would have alerted me to it sooner; and after KYL I would have understood that the hard seed like lump I was feeling was more serious than the softer, pea like cysts I had felt in the past. Everything KYL puts out is so easy to understand and digest, but also really puts an emphasis on staying on top of breast health.” 

Ever since she started working with the Know Your Lemons Foundation, Paige has been paying it forward by teaching breast health as a Global Educator, partnering with organisations and brands that align with her breast cancer journey, and providing inspiration to her online community. “It’s just super exciting! I had just started sharing my story on Instagram, and it was really therapeutic for me – sharing my experience and helping other women learn from what I’ve been through. Getting connected with Know Your Lemons gave me even more resources to share,” she says. Paige was even inspired to create her own breast cancer related line – Titty Cat Tees. “Ever since my diagnosis I’ve just become obsessed with breasts and funny breast-themed things,” she says of the venture inspired by her own journey. 

As for working with other organisations, as a Lemonista, Paige has felt “so empowered” connecting the Know Your Lemons team with like-minded organisations which can contribute, both financially as well as through work in the community. She says: “Know Your Lemons is so deserving. Every time anyone asks me where they should donate, I always say Know Your Lemons.”

We are so happy to have you, Paige!