LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – June 5th is National Cancer Survivors Day. Cancer survivors are celebrated for their fight against the disease.
For Robin Schroeder, this day means a way to help and educate others.
“I just want to make a difference,” she said. “If I help out one person then it’s worth it for me.”
Schroeder was diagnosed with a rare form of pancreatic cancer two and a half years ago. Her doctors told her that there was no cure.
“My diagnosis is kind of a lifetime chronic illness,” she said.
Throughout her treatment, she spoke with doctors over Zoom. She said the first time she met her surgeon face-to-face was the day of her surgery.
The surgery was a Whipple procedure, the only type of treatment that would work for Schroeder’s type of cancer. She said chemotherapy would not work to cure her cancer.
Schroeder said the Whipple procedure is where pieces of the pancreas and other organs are removed, rearranged, and then replaced.
After an 8 hour surgery, Schroeder said her body felt upside down, but the surgery had no complications.
“It was a life-changing operation for me,” she said. “I feel so much better. I didn’t realize how sick I had been.”
She said the road to recovery was not easy, since her family could not visit her in the hospital. But after a day, she was up and walking. Within three weeks, she was back at work.
“I did okay in the hospital by myself because I really focused on my recovery,” Schroeder said.
Two years have passed since her surgery and now, she is training to run the New York City Marathon for pancreatic cancer in November.
“You have to write your own ending, don’t write the ending that someone else is telling you to have,” she said.