{Aired 05.03.14}

Right now there are more than 2.8 million breast cancer survivors in the United States. Our show today features one such woman – a woman whose heart you will hear as she discusses her very personal journey; her life before & after the diagnosis. You will hear how she turned some major stumbling blocks into stepping stones. The chance of dying from breast cancer is about 1 in 36. Breast cancer death rates have been going down due to the result of finding cancer earlier and with better treatment. Public awareness has been heightened on many levels yet we find that still 70% of women are not aware of their options for reconstruction.

Lydia Harlacher

Meet Lydia Harlacher – Breast Cancer Survivor, wife, mother, entrepreneur and owner of Zaaz Studios a whole body vibration studio in Houston. Like many women, Lydia decided to get breast augmentation after having her children and breast feeding them. She noticed her breast were no longer the same prior to breast feeding. Her journey begins with this procedure that eventually turned into capsular contracture, a risk that can occur with breast augmentation.  Her body’s response to the foreign objects naturally  formed a hard shell of scar tissue around the implants.  Although this created pain and distortion of the breasts over time,  it was difficult for her to resolve this without having to deal with the possibility of removing  the implants.  As the implants continued to contract and harden, Lydia found she became self-conscious when even hugging her friends and family. She kept this secret to almost everyone in her life and like many women just lived with the outcome.

Having battled depression for almost 30 years, one night she fell into a pit of emotional and spiritual darkness marked by despair and overwhelming sadness.    It was the worst episode of depression she had ever faced.  Not wanting to feel the pain anymore, she swallowed a handful of antidepressants.  Fortunately,  this was not to be the end. Lydia sought the assistance of Dr Kimberly Cress a specialist in treating depression with Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS).   Her therapy  prepared her for the next obstacle in her life – breast cancer. Lydia immediately knew the lump in her breast was cancerous. Having overcome depression,  Lydia was strong enough to face breast cancer and has  plans for breast reconstruction. Today she celebrates a milestone – her final day in chemotherepy!  With a strong and determined desire to live healthy, she wants  to give the gift of hope and compassion  to other women battling depression and life threatening illnesses.

Making Strides Against Breast Cancer

Lydia’s close friend,  Carol Peyton  is a successful real estate and marketing executive and the creative genius behind Rock the Ribbon, a team in the Memorial area that is doing so much to support women in their fight against breast cancer. Watch the team video here and get inspired!  

To donate to this organization, click here. Donations can also be made by purchasing a “Kissing Ball”

Purchase a Kissing Ball and your donation will benefit the American Cancer Society.
Purchase a Kissing Ball and your donation will benefit the American Cancer Society.

which is,  in their words a way to “Kiss Breast Cancer Goodbye.” For more information about the kissing ball fundraiser happening Sunday May 4th at Coldwell Banker United, 14201 Memorial Drive call 713.482.2033  or you may support the team Sunday May 10th at Reliant Stadium.