Duluthian battling breast cancer shares the importance of self checks

Duluthian battles breast cancer and emphasizes the need for self checks

Jenny Anderson is sharing her personal story about being diagnosed with breast cancer after having a normal mammogram. She wants to share the importance of self checks.

Jenny Anderson was overall healthy and felt fine when she went in for a routine mammogram last fall. 

“I’m not a smoker, not a drinker. I take care of myself pretty well,” said Jenny. “October 11th, I had a completely normal mammogram. I got the note from the doctor stating you’re good for another year and thought, okay, everything is good. And then just before Christmas, I started feeling pain in my left breast and there was swelling in my armpit and I knew something wasn’t right. So a couple weeks after Christmas, I was at the doctor’s and she seemed very concerned. So another mammogram, ultrasound, first biopsy and it ended up being cancer.” 

Now diagnosed with stage three breast cancer, Jenny says the worst health problems she had before were migraines. Her husband Bryce felt angry when he found out about the diagnosis. 

“The fact that it wasn’t caught, or it just came on that fast, we know that it’s listed as a rare and aggressive cancer, so we don’t know if it’s literally that aggressive or if it just wasn’t caught on the mammogram. We really don’t know, and we’ll probably never will,” said Bruce. “So yeah, angry, and then as a guy, I mean, we’re all fixers and we have to sit here and just not do anything other than be supportive is a struggle.”

The couple has been traveling down to Wisconsin every three weeks for Jenny’s chemotherapy at the Minnesota Oncology Hudson Clinic. 

“I take a week off of work every time I have chemo because my immune system is non-existent for that week,” said Jenny.

Each time they go to Hudson, the couple leaves Sunday. Jenny has chemo Monday morning and then a follow-up appointment Tuesday. 

“Every three weeks it’s chemotherapy, eventually surgery, possibly radiation. So it’s gonna be a year, year and a half of my life. This is what it is,” said Jenny. 

With everything she is going through, Jenny wants others to know the importance of self checks and advocating for yourself. 

“By the time I had the MRI, the lump in my armpit was about the size of a golf ball. And the one in my breast was about the size of a racquetball,” said Jenny. “Do your self checks, they’re very important. And if you find something, if you feel something that’s abnormal, push for better testing. They push for the MRIs. definitely be your own advocate. You owe it to yourself and your loved ones.”

There was a Breast Cancer Benefit for Jenny on Saturday from 4 to 8 pm at Players Sports Bar, located at 4024 Grand Avenue in Duluth. For a $10 donation, there was a spaghetti dinner at 4 pm as well as a silent auction and a raffle. Proceeds will help Jenny and her family with the ongoing expenses from the frequent trips to Hudson as well as any medical bills not covered by insurance. 

Breast cancer benefit

Players Sports Bar in Duluth hosted a breast cancer benefit for Jenny Anderson and her family.

“I’m really impressed and humbled by everyone’s generosity and support,” said Jenny.

If you would like to donate to the Anderson family, Bruce’s Cash App username is $RoadblockMN, and his Venmo is @RoadblockMN.