Back in October I wrote two posts in relation to the Breast Cancer Awareness month of which received some great feedback and hopefully got women and men thinking about checking their boobs for the early signs of cancer. The team at the Estée Lauder Companies got in touch within the same to ask whether I would like to talk about one of their many campaigns, in particular their Breast Cancer campaign and about a publication called 'Afterwards; Reflections on life beyond cancer' and I knew instantly it was something I wanted to get involved in. Instead of rushing to complete reading this book and trying to force it into my head to write about, I decided to take my time to really digest the words written on the pages, especially as a lot of the words were very much real and personal to those individuals who had kindly got involved with the publication.

Statistics show that one in eight women in the UK will develop breast cancer, however down to scientific breakthroughs, treatment advances and raised awareness through so many different avenues the survival rates continue to improve. However this doesn't mean we should stop talking about breast cancer between us young women, it's so important. This year's campaign centred on the question, 'what happens afterwards?' Having recently read The C-Word by fellow blogger Lisa Lynch this was something she also discussed through her book and it definitely got me thinking ahead of reading this short publication.

Afterwards, the book, was put together to highlight the inspirational stories of those who have been affected by breast cancer and are attempting to move on with their lives. This includes those who have been given the all clear, those who are living with the disease and those who have sadly lost a loved one to this horrible disease. It aims to support those women (and men, because let's remember that breast cancer doesn't just affect females) living with the disease by providing them with the experience and advice from other individuals who have been through the difficult times too.

The first thing was the size of the book, it was a perfect little size that could easily be popped in your bag and sit nicely on your bookshelf (it now sits proudly on mine!). I wasn't sure whether I would come through the end of the book dry or teary eyed but I knew how important this book was to other people.

The book has a variety of different sections to it; During | Living with breast cancer, Afterwards | Living beyond breast cancer and Afterwards | Learning from those who have lost loved ones. This gives an overall look at how we as individual human beings cope with breast cancer. Upon each pair of pages is a short description about the individual along with a quote from them.

Some of the quotes are really powerful and inspiring, reading about these individuals who have gone through living with breast cancer. It also gives an opportunity to remember those who have lost their lives due to the disease. I did find as I was turning the page a lot of the people used in the book where around their 30s onwards, however from working with Coppafeel! in October I understand that this can also affect us as young women so taking part in these campaigns have really opened up my thoughts.

I would definitely urge anybody who knows someone going through this disease to read a copy of this book. It's inspiring, enlightening and can come across as a positive light through the darker times.

Thanks to the team at the Estée Lauder Campaigns for this opportunity to read and share their publications with my readers.

thanks for reading,