Diagnosed with breast cancer in 2012 shortly after moving to Dover from New York City, Purnima Dixit contacted the Delaware Breast Cancer Coalition shortly after her treatment was determined to see what services were available. Since that time, Dixit has worked with other women who received the devastating diagnosis through the peer mentoring program.
âIn this program, survivors like me, after the training, can guide and teach newly diagnosed patients what to expect when they need to make treatment decisions. I think this one-on-one gives them hope that they can and will survive this.
Born in Mumbai, India, Dixit comes from a family that emphasizes the importance of education. She obtained a master’s degree in chemistry from the Indian Institute of Technology. His father was a consultant in the field of rubber coating and Dixit worked with him for a few years but did not find the field interesting.
âI decided to change my field to environmental science because it was a booming field,â Dixit said. âI started working for a consulting engineering firm. In the meantime, my parents have prepared me for marriage. Yes, it was an arranged marriage, but we met before we both agreed to this marriage. We celebrated our 43e anniversary this year.
Dixit’s sisters settled in the United States and the couple decided to settle here for better opportunities, arriving in 1983. They first settled in New Jersey, but with her experience in the field of environment, Dixit secured a position with New York City in their environmental protection department. They moved to New York where they raised two daughters.
After 28 years, Dixit retired and moved to Dover in April 2012, being diagnosed with cancer during a routine mammogram in August.
âOf course, it was a shock at first,â Dixit said. âWith the support of my husband, my children and my extended family, I accepted the possibility. Dr Newell, my breast cancer surgeon, also helped and healed me. I will be forever indebted to him for his care and empathy. She was the one who introduced me to the Delaware Breast Cancer Coalition. As I come from a family of doctors, I did not need much help in making a decision about my treatment. I had a total mastectomy. With recent research on genetic field testing for the treatment of breast cancer, I am very happy to report that I did not need any chemotherapy or radiation therapy, only to take hormonal drugs for treatment. . I have to take this medicine for ten years and am happy to report that I have almost completed nine years of treatment.
In addition to her work with the peer mentoring team, Dixit also volunteers with the Delaware Hospice and the Senior Medicare Program. She also enjoys the Nurture with Nature breast cancer talks offered by the Delaware Breast Cancer Coalition, as they allow survivors to meet and share stories.
âWith all of this volunteer work, I am enjoying my retirement,â Dixit said. âI have two grandchildren who keep us alive and happy. We also love to travel and are both avid readers so we never get bored. “
Betsy Price is a freelance writer from Wilmington with 40 years of experience, 15 of them with the News Journal in Delaware.