Judy Blume has been diagnosed with breast cancer.
The author of many popular young adult books, including Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret, Superfudge, Iggie’s House and Blubber, revealed her diagnosis in a blog post on Wednesday.
“We were supposed to leave for five weeks in Italy on July 29 – four of those weeks would be spent at an artists’ colony housed in a castle in Umbria where I was hoping to finish my new book. A castle! Sound too good to be true? Uh huh,” she writes.
“A visit to the radiologist on June 12 for a routine ultrasound (dense breast tissue) led to a core biopsy,” the post continues.
Upon receiving the results from her biopsy, Blume, 74, tried to process her diagnosis.
“Wait – me? There s no breast cancer in my family (recent extensive genetic testing shows no genetic connection). I haven’t eaten red meat in more than 30 years. I’ve never smoked, I exercise every day, forget alcohol – it’s bad for my reflux – I’ve been the same weight my whole adult life. How is this possible? Well, guess what – it’s possible.”
Six weeks after learning she had cancer, Blume underwent a mastectomy on July 30. “This surgery went well, one night in the hospital, very little pain,” she writes.
The author also discloses that 17 years ago, she had a hysterectomy after being diagnosed with cervical cancer but “caught it just in time.” “No other treatment necessary. Another story for another time,” she says.
In her blog entry, Blume, whose books have sold over 80 million copies and been translated into 31 languages, reflects on the month following her procedure.
“My friends who’ve had breast cancer have been so helpful and supportive I can never thank them enough,” she writes. “They got me through this. They were my inspiration. If we can do it, you can do it! They were right. And I got off easy. I don t need chemo which is a whole other ballgame.”