October is Breast Cancer Awareness month and I would like to take this time to acknowledge the amazing ladies who have been through the journey. I paired up with African Pride in an effort to showcase the beauty and strength of some of these ladies. The African Pride Breast Cancer Series embodies fostering #GirlPower with the brand’s “My Pride. My Way” campaign. #APSOS

Check out their stories below:

Name: Ebony Steele

Age: 40

Occupation: Co-Host of The Rickey Smiley Morning Show

How did you learn of your diagnosis with breast cancer?

I was at home relaxing when I reached over and scratched my breast and found a lump. But I didn’t think much of it. That night while on the phone with my sister, she replied, “If you don’t go to the Doctor now, I’m going to tell Momma.” Wow, I thought, “hadn’t heard that since we were kids.”  So the next day I visited the Doctor and the lump was determined to be cancerous.

As a survivor, can you share your journey with our readers?

Here I am a young, 35 yrs old with her whole life ahead of her. It took me through an emotional whirlwind after receiving the news. I thought breast cancer was an “old white woman” disease. NOT! I knew I had to find my support system. My family really helped me fight and push through this traumatic experience. I saw the”Fight” in their eyes. They were not ready to lose me and that helped me to “Fight” with undying strength because we did not want to lose each other.

How did treatment affect your hair and how did you treat your hair post treatments?

By the end of my chemo treatment I lost over 90% of the hair off my body.  Through it all, I continued my daily regimen of the African Pride Oil to keep my skin and scalp moisturized and soft. Once my hair grew back, I used the African Pride Leave In Conditioner to make my hair appear fuller and more manageable.

What advice did you want to leave with our readers regarding staying strong through times of challenge?

Find that “Support System”. For me, it was family but for someone else it may be your spouse, church, friends etc. Always remember, “You are not alone.”  There are plenty of groups and events to connect with that offer support.

How can our readers get in contact with you?

I would Love to hear from you! Visit me at www.ebonysteele.com.If you’re in Atlanta, come see me and support my Bare Chest for Breast Cancer Gifting Suite & Runway Show benefiting Breast Cancer Awareness on Tuesday, October 23rd (bcbc2012.eventbrite.com).

Your “Favorite Girlfriend”,

Ebony Steele

Co-Host of “The Rickey Smiley Morning Show”

African Pride Expert Corner:

Suggested Products:

African Pride Growth Oil and African Pride Leave-In Conditioner

Name: Janae’ Veal

Age: 32

Occupation: Fitness Trainer

1. How did you learn of your diagnosis with breast cancer?

I had a noticeable lump under my arm. Once checked, testing confirmed it as aggressive stage one breast cancer.

2. As a survivor, can you share your journey with our readers?

I was very healthy, cooked my own food (no extra salt or sugar), exercised regularly & I had no history of breast cancer in my family. I was the healthiest person that my friends and family knew, but that still didn’t change the fact that I had breast cancer at age 30. Over the past year I had a lumpectomy (April 2011), 6 rounds of chemotherapy (June – October 2011) and 33 radiation treatments (October- December 2011). I continued treatment with Herceptin until June 2012 and currently take hormone therapy treatment with Tamoxifin.

3.  How did treatment affect your hair and how did you treat your hair post treatments?

I continued to wear it as I always did, long and pressed out straight for about a week or so. After being tired of loose hair being all over the place, I decided to shave it. I loved my bald head. I felt so confident, so sexy, so free, so empowered.  Once I was done with the treatments it slowly started to grow back. Before cancer I had naturally curly hair that I wore either curly or straight. My new hair came back so extra soft, just like baby hair. It was so silky and soft, and wavy once it got a little length to it. After about 4 months it started to feel normal again. It’s back to being really curly. I miss my long hair some days but short is so easy.

4. What advice did you want to leave with our readers regarding staying strong through times of challenge?

It seems like a lot, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I never thought that I was going to die. So from day one, I always claimed how I wanted to feel and to be positive. I used this as an opportunity to show those around me that God is still real. I share my journey with any and everybody. I want people to know that they are not alone. Things happen for a reason and we must embrace whatever change it may be. I always tell people that breast cancer has been the best worst thing to ever happen to me

5. How can our readers get in contact with you?

Twitter: @jveal

Facebook: facebook.com/janae.veal 

Instagram: @j_veal

Blog: itsmyjourney2mydestiny.blogspot.com 

African Pride Expert Corner:

Suggested Products:

African Pride Shea Butter Miracle Bouncy Curls Pudding for Janae’s New Curly Coif

I you are a Survivor, currently battling Breast Cancer, or know someone who is suffering from it, I send my love and prayers to you and I hope that you realize that you are not alone. Keep the faith!

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