Survivor

Ebony is definitely not shy. She is a strong, vivacious woman with an instinctive affinity for the spotlight—a gift she has shared as a dancer, a model, host and National Radio/TV Personality. When you combine Ebony’s outgoing nature with her warm smile and friendly personality, it’s impossible not to consider her a friend from the very first moment you meet her. Here’s her story…

In August of 2007 I’d recently relocated to Dallas for my dream job as co-host of the Rickey Smiley Morning Show. In September I was lying on the couch watching television and I felt something kind of odd in my breast. It was just a brief brush across and I thought to myself that this is probably nothing. However, I spoke with my sister later on the phone and mentioned it to her.

I led the conversation off by telling her that this is probably similar to the cyst that I discovered years earlier. So in my mind, I dismissed it as nothing. She insisted that I should head to the doctor to get this checked. I told her that I’d go in time and she said, “If you don’t go, I’m telling Momma!” As we laughed, I realized that she was serious. Within the hour, my phone rang and it was momma. She said “You already know what I’m calling for and you need to go to the doctor immediately.”

After a series of tests over the next two weeks, the unimaginable news was delivered to me- the doctor said, “You have breast cancer.” I was devastated and suddenly my dream job could no longer keep me on a cloud. All I could think about was this diagnosis. It felt as if I was leaving the dream world and I’d walked into a nightmare. Now came the even harder part- delivering the news to my family and friends as well as facing my new reality. Do I keep it a secret? Do I share it with the millions of listeners who tune in everyday and have become extended family? There were more questions than answers.

With no answers in sight, I began to have a pity party. But, no one showed up. So, I decided it was best to face my new life head on. I knew that I’d been given this job for a reason larger than myself. I now knew what that reason was and I made the courageous decision to share my diagnosis on air in hopes of helping someone else. The surprise was that it actually helped me. I felt a burst of energy and I knew that I had to find some way of getting active to help others. Normally, I would have made this all about me, me, and me. I made the decision to fight after looking in my family’s eyes. My mother, my father and my sister owned this diagnosis as well. They felt as if this was happening to them. “How could they fight if I didn’t fight too?”

I joined Susan G. Komen for the Cure and became a National Ambassador for the Circle of Promise. I began touring the country for various activities to spread the word. In joining, I learned of other wonderful means for helping others such as the Pink Together community (by General Mills www.pinktogether.com). Thank you so much for allowing me to share my story. God bless all of the survivors and you… our supporters in the fight to end breast cancer forever. Join the Circle. circleofpromise.org