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Survivor Stories: LaDena

My name is LaDena Renwick Tilley.

I fought breast cancer twice and I won!! I was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 1999 and had a lumpectomy with chemotherapy and radiation. I was 30 years old. Then, in 2013, I was diagnosed again and had a bilateral mastectomy. I never thought in a million years that I’d be going through it again.

This last battle was the hardest due to the fact that both of my breasts were being removed, my body was being transformed. As a woman having breasts is part of our womanhood. If it wasn’t for my FAITH IN GOD and the support of my loving, incredible husband, family, friends and my Greenville Women’s Clinic family I couldn’t have gotten through it.  

Having breast cancer did affect me, mentally and emotionally. I allowed myself to grieve because I was experiencing a loss, but then I thought if my FAITH is going to be authentic then it must be tried. Always remember that doubt sees obstacles, but FAITH sees the way. I had to learn that my breasts don’t define me as a woman, for a phenomenal woman isn’t defined by her physical appearance, but by the content of her spirit and she doesn’t allow her flesh to overrule the righteousness of GOD that is destined in her life. Her beauty lies within.

Whenever we hear the word cancer it brings fear upon us but allow courage to take center stage so that fear has no place in your life. My experience with breast cancer has been one of self-growth and assurance.

Assurance that I am more than a conqueror, a warrior, a victor and not a victim. I’ve grown in love, patience, peace and strength and learned how to thrive in the midst of troubled times. Every survivor of breast cancer is a CEO, which is a CHOSEN EMPOWERED OVERCOMER, therefore we must be prayerful daily, humble in our living and a service to others.

I salute all those who have lost the fight, are fighting or will be fighting this disease. 

May I say to you, be determined to fight with LOVE, DIGNITY, and DILIGENCE!! When I look in the mirror I am reminded of the battle that I fought, but more importantly the VICTORY that I’ve WON!!! The road to recovery has been a long one, but as Maya Angelo said “I wouldn’t take nothing for my journey,” I am so Blessed to be a two-time survivor.

During the month of October when you make a donation to Greenville Women’s Clinic to provide financial assistance to local breast cancer survivors in need of post-mastectomy care with Avila Physical Therapy -OR- share a story or image related to breast cancer month or a survivor and tag Greenville Women’s Clinic in the post on Facebook you’ll be entered into a drawing to win one of the following items donated by The Spa at Merle Norman:

  • 25-minute Swedish Massage
  • A Signature Hydrating Manicure
  • You and up to 3 Guests receive a Hydrating Body Treatment in the Grotto and use of all spa amenities
  • Additional prizes will also be available!

Depending on your Facebook privacy settings, you will need to be sure to share the post using the setting “public”, you may also share the picture directly on our page.