“Don’t worry about anything, instead pray about everything. Tell God what you need and thank Him for all He has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.”
– Philippians 4:6-7
My name is Jennifer Roberts, and I’m a West Texas girl from El Paso. I moved to the Dallas-Fort Worth area in September of 1997 and started at Premier the following month. I’ve been an associate with Premier for 18 years. It’s not just a job—it has been a blessing to my family and life! I am in awe by all the lives that have been touched around the world and I am humbled by Premier’s giving.
My husband Mark and I have been married for 17 years. We have 3 great kids; our youngest daughter Sarah is 12, our son Luke is 15, and our daughter Brooke is 27 and married with two girls, Cadence (4-years-old) and Mila (2-years-old).
In November of 2013, I had my annual mammogram and was told all looked good. By March I started having a pain in my left breast and that area felt lumpy. I went to my doctor, and she didn’t think it was anything to be worried about but recommended a sonogram. The results came back as “suspicious,” and I had an appointment with a surgeon for a biopsy the following week.
In April of 2014 I was diagnosed with Stage 1 Level 3 breast cancer. The world seemed to stop for just a moment when I got that phone call at work. But life didn’t stop. I cried and prayed to God that He would bring me through this and give me peace. We called our pastor and family that evening to start praying—prayer warriors! We spoke with our kids and knew that if we were okay with it all, they would be okay too. This was the beginning of a journey we had no control over, but God did and He still does!
The process moves fast once diagnosed. There was lots of information to absorb and procedures to be done. My husband was there by my side for every appointment and procedure. I had a lumpectomy in May, and my lymph nodes were clear — an answer to our prayers. In June, I started chemo treatments. Due to the aggressive nature of the cancer, my doctor suggested we do all we could to lessen the chances of it spreading.
I did 8 rounds of chemo. My hair started falling out 14 days after my first treatment. I got my head shaved and purchased every colorful bandana I could so I could coordinate with my wardrobe for work. I had wonderful friends who also gave me beautiful head covers, since I decided not to wear a wig. Bald is beautiful but it’s great to have hair again! My last treatment was September 11th. I was supposed to start radiation but could not because of genetic results, so the doctors suggested I have the source removed. On October 22nd, I had a double mastectomy and reconstructive surgery. I slept in a recliner for 3 weeks and my daughter Sarah slept on the couch next to me so I wouldn’t be alone.
We believe I’m cancer free now! I am so grateful for my family, Premier, church family, and friends who lifted me up through this process. Prayer is powerful! I appreciate my friend Patty who kept my family in the know by posting on Facebook for me. Our journey was eased by the love and support we received — thank you all.
We all have a choice and mine was to continue living to the fullest each and every day. I did not have breast cancer in my family, so I advise everyone to know your body and don’t put off having mammograms. Do self-exams and never be afraid to ask questions. Let people know what’s going on. I was so surprised to learn how many others have made this journey too, what wisdom and encouraging words they had for me and the hope they gave. Now it’s my turn to be there for those who need a listening ear, a hug, and a prayer for their journey.
“Always be joyful. Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.”
– 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18