“Then the realisation, the fear of dying and having two young children, am I going to be around?”
On the time, Hawkins’ youngest daughter was solely seven months previous, and her eldest was three years previous.
And she or he had spent most of her life with out her father, who she misplaced at 4½ years previous.
“I know what it’s like to grow up at that age having lost a parent,” she mentioned.
“I looked at my girls being similar ages and I needed to do everything I could to get through that.”
The analysis made Hawkins query what she had performed mistaken. She by no means smoked in her life, would very hardly ever drink, and thought she was match and wholesome. She didn’t have a household historical past of breast most cancers.
When breaking the information to the remainder of her household, Hawkins mentioned the toughest factor was telling her mum.
“I’m my mum’s only child and because I lost my dad so young, my mum had to raise me and play two parts,” she mentioned.
“Telling her was worse than getting told you have breast cancer.”
After getting previous the overwhelming feelings and grief, Hawkins “put on her blinkers” and determined she was going to do all the things she may to outlive.
She continued to work by way of the course of her journey, solely taking day off for hospital stays. She needed to undergo six rounds of chemotherapy.
Earlier than chemo, Hawkins’ hair was thick and lengthy. However 10 days after her first therapy, it was fully gone.
“You had to deal with the people who would try to keep your spirits up and say, ‘it’s OK, it’s just hair’, but let’s be honest, you tell me it’s just hair. Hair is everything, hair is me,” she mentioned.
She began to put on wigs much like her hair so her kids wouldn’t be capable to inform the distinction.
Hawkins mentioned the therapy shook her mentally, emotionally, and financially, though she was blessed to have household help.
Hawkins’ husband spent 5 years as a stay-at-home dad earlier than he returned to work two years in the past.
“He was my full-time support,” she mentioned.
In March 2016, Hawkins celebrated her thirtieth birthday by internet hosting an intimate excessive tea with household and shut associates.
“I said to my family and friends, turning 30, I’m just grateful for my life, and that was more than anything to me,” she mentioned.
Hawkins is now going into her seventh yr since she was recognized. She nonetheless works full-time, and typically goes days with out enthusiastic about trauma from the previous.
Throughout her journey by way of chemo, she sought assist from her physician in coping with her psychological well being.
Hawkins had nervousness and an excessive worry of dying, however wasn’t coping with it. Her physician advisable medicine, and mentioned if she began avoiding issues, it was going to have an effect on the remainder of her life and create extra issues.
“Sure, I do have my moments, but at the end of the day, I’m just grateful for life. I’m here,” she mentioned.
Channel 9 is supporting the twenty fifth anniversary Mom’s Day Basic on Sunday, Might 8, elevating cash for breast most cancers analysis.
As an area ambassador, Hawkins shares her story on social media and talks about it in the neighborhood.
Hawkins mentioned whereas the journey examined her mentally and bodily, she continued to maintain a constructive angle.
“I’ve explained to my children with anything that they do when they say they can’t do something, you don’t just give up, you have to give it all you’ve got,” she mentioned.
“Yes, it was a very dark and hard time, but by just fighting through it, you get through it.”