Maria "Dorothy" Delicana
My name is Maria Dorothy, but my friends just call me Dorothy. I was diagnosed with stage 1 breast cancer in June 2014 after my yearly mammogram. My paternal aunt and my younger sister were also diagnosed with breast cancer.
Despite my family history I never really thought there was much of chance that I would have cancer. Following my diagnosis, I had 2 surgeries, 33 sessions of radiation therapy, and 1 visit to the ER for pericarditis as a side effect of the cancer treatment. My diagnosis came a month short of my 48th birthday. My birthday was spent recovering from surgery. And now each birthday has extra meaning and every candle is a gift.
I live alone with my cat, Nemo. I don’t have immediate family in Chicago. My sister lives in Washington State with her husband. The rest of my family lives in the Philippines and are currently facing struggles of their own. I witnessed the challenges faced by my family as they battled cancer. Upon diagnosis, I thought this would be a personal battle that I would have to fight alone.
But I am not alone. I have been blessed to be surrounded with friends, both old and new. Despite the obstacles in my journey, I was able to keep my spirit up because of the love, support and prayers I have received. I am hugely grateful for the good friends who supported me on my journey towards recovery. I look forward to sharing many more birthdays with everyone