It's April 16th and time for your monthly 16 Buddy Check Reminder and today an Elkhart Senior Citizen wants women in her age group know you're never too old for a mammogram.
Her license plate reads "Knit Nut" but there is nothing nutty about 77-year-old Millie Youdbulis of Elkhart.
Millie loves to knit and crochet and last year made 43 blankets for the kids she reads to in local schools.
This year she is working on hats, a chance she might not have had if she had followed her own advice.
Millie had mammograms every year for decades but when she turned 75 she thought she didn't need them anymore.
Kids she might not have gotten to if she had followed her own advice..
Millie is also a diabetic and says her Endocrinologist kept hounding her, "Everytime I would go in to see him he would kind of growl at me and tell me I hadn't had a mammogram for two years and I should take care of that."
So just to make her doctor happy Millie went and had her mammogram and got a phone call she wasn't expecting, They saiad, "You have to come back in tomorrow morning, we want to look at you again."
Millie had breast cancer and needed a lumpectomy. She says that very day her favorite newpaper cartoon gave her inspiration, "This little bird is just sitting on a branch just singing his heart out and the last frame said, 'there's always something to sing about.' "
Millie cut the cartoon out of the paper and a week later the author send her the original.
Millie underwent a lumpectomy at the Women's Center at Elkhart General. A small balloon was inserted at the same time that would deliver ten doses of radiation over five days.
Millie's cancer was found early and she approached her treatment with faith and humor, saying, "Those women were so wonderful (at the Women's Center) it was almost worth having cancer just to meet them and we had a good time."
Still, Millie wouldn't wish cancer on anyone and has her endorcrinologist to thank for hounding her to get a mammogram.
And she hopes sharing her story will make other seniors make an appointment. "If what I am saying will save the life of one woman, will motivate one women to go have a mammogram and have this done, and keep doing it regularly, then it's worth it, " adding, "Do it!"
Millie says she is alive because her doctor made her do it--alive so she can continue to spend time with her husband, Bill and their children. And alive so that she can continue to knit and crochet for all the youngsters she reads to in the schools.