She wasn't feeling the least bit sick when she found a lump on her breast, so it was a shock for her when the doctors told her it was an aggressive tumor.
An Astoria resident since 2006, Wehrman has been a runner since middle school, back when she used to think that one to two miles was a long distance. Since graduating college, she has run two marathons and several other running and triathlon events, including two half-Ironman challenges and her first Olympic-distance triathlon, which she completed to benefit Achilles International, where she has been volunteering to motivate runners with special needs since 2008.
“They have built in running partners for inspiration and role models,” said Wehrman, something that has helped her greatly with her post-surgery and chemo recovery. “They were pretty amazing throughout everything. I've been surrounded by people who have obstacles in their lives.”
Wehrman made her story public by way of an autobiographical blog, cancerisnotthebreast, which documents her unique journey through breast cancer as a young working professional.
“When you're going through cancer, everybody thinks things are going to go back to normal, and that doesn't happen,” said Wehrman. “You really hope that everything bounces back right away, but it's a little longer road than I thought.”
Wehrman, along with four other borough representatives, was selected as part of the ING New York City Foot Locker Five Borough Challenge for last year's marathon, and she will get a chance to make that run this year on November 3 barring any superstorm activity. The runners will tackle the first 13 miles together before splitting off on their own to finish the last 13.2 miles.
“I feel like it's been a long wait. Last year, I was so excited because it was one year after treatment,” said Wehrman. “But that's the way life goes. Things change, you have to adapt.”