I am a breast cancer survivor and it was through my own self-examination that I found the lump that changed my life. Luckily I seem to have found it early enough to have it completely taken care of. After surgery and a year of chemo, I'm still here. If you catch breast cancer early enough, it need not be the end of the world. So be aware. Give fear a well-deserved kick in the ass.
The Susan G. Komen Foundation and The American Cancer Society have excellent websites full of information.