Claudia was born in Mexico and was a self-employed housekeeper in the Naples area when she first came to the Neighborhood Health Clinic because of a recurring pain in her left breast. After extensive testing and consultations, Clinic doctors ordered a mammography and ultrasound. Within a few days Claudia’s worst fears were confirmed . . . her diagnosis was breast cancer. She had never been so afraid in all her life, not only for herself but for her children.
Claudia’s first concern was how she was going to care for her children. Would she have enough energy left after treatment to take care them? Claudia was also looking for someone to help her understand her diagnosis and help explain what chemotherapy and radiation treatment meant for her recovery.
Soon after Claudia’s diagnosis she met Ann, the Neighborhood Health Clinic’s Nurse Coordinator. Ann heard her fears and supplied that much needed comfort and support telling her she would be okay. Then with Ann’s inspirational guidance and sage advice from the Clinic’s medical professionals, Claudia decided to aggressively fight her battle with cancer with every resource available — including undergoing chemotherapy and surgery.
Claudia says, “I was expected to live only 4-5 years. But thanks to God and the outstanding medical care and support provided at the Neighborhood Health Clinic (my safe haven) I am alive today. It may be hard for some people to understand but as a single Mom I really felt protected at the Clinic. They have given me the greatest gifts anyone could ever receive: the return of my health and the opportunity to once again love and nurture my beautiful children.”
Today Claudia’s cancer is in remission. This brave young woman has persevered, survived, and thrived. Currently an administrative assistant at a local college where she is working on her degree, she also is a volunteer advocate to woman diagnosed with breast cancer. Her message to them is, “Stay strong… have faith… never lose hope… you will be okay.”
Click here to view our Hope & Healing video and hear Claudia’s story directly from her.