Imagine baring your soul to 6 million people at once — and having no recollection of the moment.
It happened to “Good Morning America” news anchor Amy Robach, who was diagnosed with breast cancer and took a leave of absence from the telecast to undergo a double mastectomy last fall. But the rising network news star with beauty queen looks and the iron will of a boxer returned to the telecast just three weeks after the major surgery.
“I was absolutely scared on many levels, because fear is such a part of cancer,” Robach said to the NY Daily News.
“The funny thing is I actually have thanked ABC News several times for letting me come back so quickly. I wanted to have something in my life to focus on other than doctors and needles and medicines and just looking at numbers and statistics and waiting for tests. It was such an amazing distraction. And interestingly enough, being afraid of what I might say or what I might forget to say on the air was just another part of the overall fear of cancer — it invades your body, it invades your mind.
“And so because I knew I was afraid of what might happen, that was exactly why I was going to keep coming to work, I needed to keep coming on the set every morning and face my fear. I did not want to let cancer — and the fear of what could happen to me physically or mentally while I was in front of 6 million people — I didn’t want to let that stop me from doing what I love.”
“When I was on the air, I felt like I was functional. But chemo is cumulative, so each round it hits you harder and it has some pretty scary side effects, like memory loss.
“The chemo brain, the chemo fog, is a real thing. I would have conversations with people, they would take pictures with me after the show and they would send them to me and say thank you and it took my breath away — it upset me tremendously because I actually wouldn’t be able to remember taking that picture or having a conversation, and for me that was one of the hardest side effects of chemo. I was so afraid I was gonna drop the ball or just do or say something stupid because I wasn’t in my sharpest mode.
Read more of the in-depth story at The Daily News