My name’s Jessica Lozano, I’m married with 2 kids.I have Mexican parents (all my family is between Mexico and USA) but I was raised in France. My parents were frequent flyers so I traveled around the world. I studied journalism and biology, and until June 2019, I tutored seniors in high school and had my own enterprise.
I met with Jeune et rose in November 2018, in a concert they gave me a Know Your Lemons flyer and asked, “Did you know you can get cancer at a young age?” I was surprised at first but I told them that I was vigilant as my aunt had metastatic cancer. At age 13, I saw an ad in a magazine about auto palpitations (self exam) and this very strong message “checking your breasts and doing an auto palpation can save your life” I don’t know why, but ever since then I’ve checked at least every other month.
Early 2019 , I felt a lump and it stayed several menstrual cycles…not getting bigger or changing, but always there. I checked with two different doctors and they told me the same thing “it’s nothing”, “it’s in your head”, “you can’t have cancer at your age,” etc.
I remembered the lemons: and I had a change in shape size, a hard lump and inverted nipple: 3 out of 12. I asked the doctor “Is it like a bingo ? You have to get them all?” As she saw that I insisted something was wrong, finally she agreed on doing a mammogram. One month later, the radiologist told me that I was too young for a mammogram and that it might lead to cancer when I am 70, so I should do a sonogram first. After the sonogram, the doctor asked if I wanted a biopsy.” I wasn’t given any information on what to expect during a biopsy in terms of pain or time it would take, but I knew it would give me answers and without a doubt, I was sure it was something. My body knew it was something weird. A week after the exam, on July 16, 2019 I’m in a little room when the radiologist tells me, “You were right, it’s triple negative cancer. You have several exams planned this week and next week. You have an appointment with Bergonié ( Bordeaux’ biggest cancer center) in august. We’ll take care of you.”
This was the only time I wanted to be wrong! But at least I was taken seriously. It’s a T1N0M0, it was less than an inch in diameter so I got a tumorectomy followed by 12 chemos, 33 radio. All treatments ended April 1st . They lasted 180 days, but I’m alive!
I still have two mandatory exams a year for the next 5 years, a palpation with a doctor and a sonogram/ mammography. This month I have an appointment with oncogenetics: a cousin of mine has BRCA2 and every generation in our families had a case or two of cancer. So if the test turns out to be positive I’ll go through a preventive mastectomy with direct reconstruction and a preventive fimbriectomy.
1 out of 8 women will have breast cancer cancer, so prevention is key. I feel like knowledge is power, but you have to know what to look for.