As many of you know, Ashley was diagnosed with DCIS, an early form of breast cancer, in February of 2022.
Ashley is having a double mastectomy procedure this spring and is hopeful that the surgery will be sufficient to rid her body of the cancerous cells. She has decided to go flat and would be happy to talk with anyone who also faces this surgery about how and why she made that decision.
Thank you to everyone who has reached out about ways to support Ashley! We've listed a few support options below.
Support Ashley & Fight Against Breast Cancer
There are many ways to support Ashley and her family during this challenging time. Most especially, Ashley is passionate about raising money to work toward both preventing and curing breast cancer in the future for her daughters and for other people who will otherwise be profoundly affected by this disease.
To donate to the Susan G. Komen Foundation in Ashley's honor, you can go to this page and donate directly there. Specifically, the DCIS that Ashley has becomes invasive cancer only a percentage of the time (the estimates are 20% to 50% of the time), but at this point there is no way to know whether the cancer will become invasive. Ashley hopes that in the future, there will be enough knowledge to know when it's okay to leave the DCIS alone and when a more aggressive approach like a mastectomy is necessary. She also hopes that with more research, more can be learned about families like hers with a strong family history but no known genetic mutation. Susan G. Komen is the largest breast cancer organization, but any money going toward cancer research helps so much!
To support Ashley and her family directly, you can use Venmo (@AshleyDicksonEllison) or PayPal (paypal.me/ashleydicksonellison). Any funds shared go toward medical costs and meals. Sara set up a "Take Them a Meal" program to help during the recovery period after surgery. Jen is leading a pink stack challenge on Instagram to raise money to put toward the Susan G. Komen page for Ashley, so check out our @unabridgedpod feed for more about how to participate!
Finally, if you're looking for a more whimsical way to support Ashley on this journey, she shares this thought: "My body will certainly be different after the surgery. I've read that some looks that are great on "flatties" are tops with ruffles, bunches, pleats, and patterns. Scarves are also a nice accent that takes the focus elsewhere. Feel free to pick out something if you want! There are also some great companies that support women who have had mastectomies including Busted Tank and Ana Ono. I usually wear a size small and would be happy to try new things."
We appreciate you all and your support so very much. We hope to get back to our regular podcast routine soon!