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Sarah, Thyroid Cancer Survivor

Meet Sarah

Thyroid Cancer Survivor

“I just knew Moffitt’s reputation and I knew that when you had cancer that's where you want to go.”

As an elementary school teacher and a mother of two, Sarah is used to taking care of everyone else. But in January 2015, her world was flipped upside down and she became the one in need of care. After months of dealing with hyperthyroidism and feeling extremely sick, a biopsy revealed stage 2 thyroid cancer that had spread to several lymph nodes. Fortunately, when Sarah’s original doctor received her diagnosis, he was at a conference alongside a Moffitt physician. He shared Sarah’s slides and test results with the Moffitt physician who quickly decided that she could give Sarah a fighting chance and requested to see her. This was welcome news for Sarah. “I just knew Moffitt’s reputation and I knew that when you had cancer that's where you want to go.”

Upon her first appointment at Moffitt, she quickly realized the reputation was true. “I was blown away by their knowledge. And I was blown away by how just conversational they were.” That same openness to hearing her concerns continued throughout Sarah’s treatment and beyond. “I was given a care nurse who gave me her email and the very first time I met her she said, ‘Never feel like you're bothering me. You're going to have a-million-and-one questions and I want you to feel like you can come to me at any time’ …and that has been the biggest comfort for me.”

That supportiveness from Sarah’s Moffitt team kept her strong. “It gave me courage just seeing them. I think they get that we're relying on them. They get that their smile and their encouragement and their positivity truly makes a difference in my day and whether or not I fight a little bit harder.”

After some especially hard days, Sarah reached a mental turning point. “I realized that this could be something that I could use to better myself and to show others what it means to have courage and to fight through anything.” Now that Sarah is cancer-free, she’s back at home and work doing just that – using her courage to inspire others. “I had a parent contact me afterwards. Her son was running and he stepped on a nail and they had to whisk him off to the ER. And he looked at his mom and he said, ‘I can be brave just like my teacher.’”