Nine years ago, D’Aunn Glass thought she felt a knot. At the time she worked for a doctor, and didn’t feel comfortable having her boss look at it. In August 2001 she went to another doctor to have it looked at. At the time she was told that it was just a cyst so she didn’t worry about it. But Dr. Pummill, MD, the doctor she worked for, wasn’t satisfied and thought “it was serious because it didn’t hurt” he told her.
“That and because my maternal grandmother died at 46, I decided to follow Pummill’s advice and go for another opinion. I am glad I didn’t listen to the first doctor” Glass said.
“Thanks to Dr. Pummill,” she said. “In October I went in for a biopsy”. It was then that they gave me the bad news."
“By October ‘01, I was 33 years old and it was funny because it was breast cancer awareness month” said Glass. She was then diagnosed with Stage 3 breast cancer and it had spread to five of nine lymph nodes.
“Just like Tana Massey’s story last week, they told me they were going to fight it aggressively because I was young and had six kids” she said.
She had a mastectomy that November, did seven months of chemo, had reconstructive surgery and then 7 weeks of radiation.
“It wasn’t as bad as I expected it to be” said Glass. “It felt like I was carried around on a pillow in God’s hands.”
She also took tamoxiphenfur for five years and needed a hysterectomy in 2009 due to complications from the medication.
“The worst part was after the reconstruction I was sore for several months and couldn’t pick up my two-year-old Darius.”
“I lost my hair while getting ready for the bank’s Christmas Party. Fabian (her husband) shaved my head and I put on a wig and went anyway,” she said. Glass worked part-time at Dr. Pummill, MD’s office and part-time at a local bank. She now works as Treasurer in the Superintendent’s office at Kansas High School.
“She never complained. She just sucked it up” stated her husband Fabian Glass. “She would bug me to go to work because she thought I wanted to get out, but all I really wanted to do is stay there and take care of her,” he said.
“She was always thinking of me and the kids. She is the strongest person I know.”
Both D’Aunn and Fabian said they could not believe the support they received from everyone. People would come over and offer advice and encouragement “like Betty Odle from Little Kansas, who told me ‘you have to go to MD Anderson (in Houston Texas).”
The church and community had fundraisers to help pay for part of it and Angels Flight took her to her appointments in Houston.
“The whole community, family, friends, my mom, church, helped us with meals, drives to treatments, babysitting, cleaning and they even did a benefit to raise money while I was in Houston.”
The church brought meals for all eight to their house for nine months.
“One of the best things that came out of this is that one of my friends started going to church with me, and got saved!” said Glass. She belongs to Leach First Baptist Church.
“Because of all the help, Fabian was able to go to Houston with me” Fabian and D’Aunn at the time had six children ranging in age from 2-14.
“Trying to keep my kid’s lives as normal as possible without the house being filled with gloom and doom and worry helped me keep my focus”.
A patient at MD Houston once told her that there are usually two things that happen when a woman is diagnosed with breast cancer. “They either get closer or he leaves her and they get divorced” said Glass.
“I couldn’t have done it without him” she said of her husband. “He was so patient and took care of the kids and me”.
Glass has since had a few lumps on the other side and one removed, but nothing cancerous.