Robyn Grosshandler


Robyn's Story...

As told by Robyn Grosshandler

Champion Status


Share some of your passions and joys, including the things that are most important to you.

My greatest passions are family and friends. I love spending time with my 3-year-old daughter Lily, my husband Eric, and my dog Finn. When I’m not taking care of my family, my greatest joys are cooking, making reservations at great restaurants, traveling around the world, and doing puzzles.

Tell us about your cancer-related journey

I felt a lump in my breast while I was pumping to feed my 3-month-old daughter in January 2020, just before COVID. A few days later, my family and I were woken in the middle of the night to a 5-alarm fire raging in the apartment directly above ours in our Upper East Side apartment in Manhattan. We were displaced from our home, and I forgot about the lump. In March 2020, just as we moved down to my husband’s family’s house in Maryland, I noticed that the lump was still there and getting bigger. I made an appointment with a doctor, only to be quickly dismissed with “normal breast changes after pregnancy” when he realized I had recently traveled from NYC, the epicenter of COVID at the time. In August 2020 I made a stop at my OBGYN on a trip up to NYC, and she immediately referred me to a radiologist for an ultrasound. Just 3 weeks later, I was diagnosed with breast cancer, 9 months after originally feeling the lump and just shy of one year after giving birth to my daughter, Lily. Just a few weeks later, I had a double mastectomy, followed by 3.5 months of chemotherapy at MSK in NYC.

What are you inspired by?

I am inspired by all cancer survivors and thrivers. It has been an incredibly rough road, both physically and (especially) mentally, to move on from my cancer diagnosis. I especially admire all of the women that I’ve connected with over the past 2+ years who have gone through similar journeys and hearing about how they have fought back against this horrible disease.

What is your favorite mantra, quote, or saying?

"There is no living thing that is not afraid when it faces danger. The true courage is in facing danger when you are afraid, and that kind of courage you have in plenty." — The Wizard of Oz

What advice would you have for people on their own cancer-related journey?

1. Don’t confuse your Google search for your doctor’s medical degree! 2. No matter what you read or hear, you are a sample size of one. 3. Post-cancer can feel almost as hard as having cancer and going through treatment some days. It’s ok to have bad days, as long as you seek out the help you need – in whatever form that may be. 4. The road through surgeries and treatments may seem long, but you will get to the other side!

Why is ICRF important to you?

Cancer is so prevalent today – I hear about it constantly. Supporting a foundation that works to create cutting edge cancer treatments to eradicate this horrific disease is one of the most important things I could possibly do. Organizations like ICRF give me hope for my future, as well as the future of my family, friends, and anyone else that may face cancer at any point in their lifetime.