BURNSVILLE, Minn. — October is breast cancer awareness month, and one family from Burnsville is doing everything they can with the time they have left together to raise awareness about the lack of funding for Metastatic breast cancer.
Kimberly and Dustin Cesarek had never been happier, they had their first baby, a beautiful daughter then 8-months later their world was thrown into disarray. Kimberly was diagnosed with Metastatic Breast Cancer.
Kimberly described the news as a total and complete shock, especially being in the health care industry and doing your monthly breast exams.
Metastatic cancer is breast cancer that has spread beyond the breast and nearby lymph nodes to other organs in the body, in Kimberly's case her lungs, bones, liver, and brain.
30% of women diagnosed with early stage cancer will metastasize, while only 2 to 6% of money raised for breast cancer goes to metastatic research. That discrepancy led Kimberly to the MetAvivor organization, a non-profit run by women with metastatic cancer.
“They want to increase awareness about the money that is spent, and they want to increase it to 30% at least because that is representative of the metastatic community,” Kimberly said.
During the 8 years since her diagnosis, her husband Dustin has been on the emotional ride with her, and co-founded Jack's Caregiver Coalition, whose mission is to help men improve the way they think, feel and act in their role as a cancer caregiver.
The 2nd annual Metsquerade fundraiser is Saturday night at the Renaissance Minneapolis Hotel.