WEST COLUMBIA, S.C. — We can't tell Tarsha Gibbs's Buddy Call story without including her husband Titus.
"I did a lot of my crying outside of her, trying to be as supportive as i can," Titus said.
When Tarsha and Titus Gibbs think back on the last 18 months of their lives they know today that their are more smiles ahead than tears.
Tarsha got the call on April 9, 2019 that she'd been diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 48.
"Having your name and the word cancer in the same sentence," she recalled.
Nothing can really prepare a person for the moment they hear that they have breast cancer. For Tarsha it was even more shocking because just five months before her diagnosis she had a mammogram where doctors saw a suspicious spot but told her it was nothing to worry about.
"I felt it under my left arm and it felt like a small knot," she said. "I felt it early on but I dismissed it until I felt that it was getting larger."
Her husband was insistent that she didn't dismiss what didn't feel right. So she saw a different physician, this one at Lexington Medical Center who sent her for more tests and a biopsy.
Tarsha was diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer. one of the most aggressive and deadly forms of the disease. Her family, her daughters, and her husband were all by her side every step of the way.
"Fortunately I was able to go to all of the treatments, right then and there," she said.
A year from the date she was diagnosed she was cleared from treatment.
"I finished radiation April 9, 2020," she said.
She's still in remission.
"Any breast cancer is treatable if diagnosed early enough," she said. "Talk with your wives, mothers daughters...don't just brush it off."
According to the Centers for Disease Control, breast cancer is the second most common cancer among women in the united states. For every one hundred thousand women in South Carolina, statistics show 129 will be diagnosed with breast cancer.
Early detection is the key to saving your life. Talk to your doctor about the right time for you to have a mammogram.