Bobbie Bright was born at Blessing Hospital. She eventually moved to Keokuk, Iowa, and built a life as a hairstylist for herself and her daughter. Sixty-seven years later, Bobbie is back at Blessing, a patient of the Blessing Cancer Center receiving treatment for breast cancer.
“I am going to get through this,” she said.
Bobbie has always received mammograms as she should. But the last time was different. The mammogram she received at Blessing Health Keokuk showed a suspicious area in her left breast. So, Bobbie had a breast biopsy at Blessing Breast Center.
One of her sisters went with her to hear the biopsy results.
“I looked at her and said, ‘Whatever it is, I have to deal with it. I do not want anyone to cry, because that will make me cry,’” Bobbie said. “So, I get in there, and they tell me I have cancer. I never did cry, and no one else around me cried.”
That attitude is not uncommon for Bobbie. She prides herself on being a happy-go-lucky, upbeat person.
“Some of my clients will say, ‘You are going to get through this. You’re very positive. You’re a strong woman.’ When they say that to me, I just get happier and happier,” Bobbie exclaimed.
Jessica Nuebel, B.S.N., R.N., is also a member of Bobbie’s care team. Jessica is the Blessing Breast Center navigator.
“Breast cancer patients can choose to work with me. I am a consistent contact person for them,” Jessica said. “They meet many care providers during treatment – doctors, nurses, social workers, dietitians, to name a few. As a patient, sitting in those appointments, receiving all that information and walking away, sometimes it’s all swirling, and it’s hard to comprehend what was said.”
“I take notes, writing it down in words that make sense to them. I give them a copy. They take it home. When they are ready to revisit it, but may not remember what was said, it is written down, and then they can always reach out to me if they need to,” she said. “I love her,” Bobbie said about Jessica. “She keeps me calm because she told me the story about her breast cancer.”
Jessica joined the ranks of breast cancer survivors in 2017.
“Having been through it and having real-life experience adds a lot of value,” Jessica concluded. “I think it’s comforting to patients to know that I have been through it. I am relatable.”
As for Bobbie, this hair stylist knows she will eventually lose her hair as her treatment continues, but she is at peace with that.
“I am happy. God has given me a second chance. The cancer was caught in stage 1,” Bobbie concluded.
For more information on the Blessing Cancer Center, go to blessinghealth.org/cancer.