Our “A Calendar to Live By” features 11 survivors we serve through Here for the Girls programs and their inspiring, uplifting stories about their cancer journey. Get to know this month’s model, Natalie!
52, Diagnosed at 47
3rd degree family history – no known genetic mutation
In April 2015, Natalie Bare, physical therapist by day, stood in front of a panel of U.S. Figure Skating judges and to her great surprise, received a standing ovation. A competitive ice skater, Natalie was accustomed to waiting for the judges’ scores, but this wasn’t about her performance. Just three months prior to this event, she had completed treatment (chemotherapy, lumpectomy, and radiation) for stage II breast cancer. It all began at her annual exam, where she had said “yes” to getting a 3D mammogram. Had she not opted for 3D, her cancer might have remained undetected until it reached a more advanced stage. Already familiar with Beyond Boobs!, she never imagined she’d meet the membership criteria! She admits she cried at her first meeting, insisting she was not a “support-group-type person.” But for her, that support grew into far more than a monthly gathering. “It’s a way of life,” says Natalie. “I can’t imagine my life without BB! I rarely miss a meeting, but when I do, I feel incomplete. I love all of our events—they are uplifting, inspiring, and fun. Sometimes it takes something silly—like a support group with the word “boobs” in it—to really get the point across.”