Jane Veitch’s story
It was the middle of the night and I was reaching the edge of unimaginable darkness. The pain was so excruciating it jolted me forward.
Fear didn’t push me over. Life pulled me back. I’m a breast cancer survivor and mom of three grown kids, grandma to four wonderful grandkids, loyal friend and Ridgeview employee.
I lost my hair, endured off-the-charts pain and couldn’t participate in the things I loved to do. But these experiences are the reason I have a heightened sense of empathy, live life on a whole new level and have complete admiration for the “Dream Team” at Ridgeview Medical Center.
I had a lumpectomy, mastectomy, full chemotherapy and radiation to treat the disease. But the best medicine was the overwhelming compassion from my family, friends and Ridgeview colleagues.
Not everyone has knowledge of what a great medical center Ridgeview is or inside knowledge of the exceptional doctors that can help. As an employee, I’m grateful I did. What I didn’t have was the practical meaning behind Ridgeview’s patient satisfaction surveys—No. 1 in the Twin Cities. I couldn’t totally grasp the benefit of equipment like our new 128-slice CT scanner, graciously donated by a west-metro family, and technology from which I clearly gained.
Shortly after I happily returned to work, I was on site for a cancer committee meeting. It hit me. There, across the table, was Dr. Rousey, my oncologist; Dr. Sperduto, my radiation oncologist; Dr. Taylor, my surgeon; and Terry Hoelz, an imaging nurse (and angel), who carried me through my battle. I seized a private moment to close my eyes and take a deep breath and smile. Their level of care and concern will sustain me forever.
While October was recognized as National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, I hope I help represent the year-round support needed for cancer patients, survivors, caregivers and all future patients.
My day of gratitude is everyday. I’m confident that more patients will share that with me—a symbol that gifts to Ridgeview Foundation do make a difference.