After a secret five-year battle with breast cancer, Harry Connick Jr.'s wife Jill Goodacre is opening up about her fight for her health.
In a new interview with People, Goodacre recalled how she went in for an annual mammogram in October 2012 and had her results come back clear. But after double-checking with a sonogram, the doctors picked up on something, which led her to have a biopsy. Shortly after, People reported, the Grammy-winning artist and his wife discovered that she had Stage 1 invasive ductal carcinoma, which required lumpectomy and radiation.
During the interview, Connick Jr. admitted he was afraid of losing his wife... he had already lost his mother to ovarian cancer at the age of 13.
"I was scared I was going to lose her, absolutely," he told the magazine. "I wasn't going to let her see that, but I was. I know from losing my mom that the worst can happen. She's my best friend, and I really don't know what I would do without her."
Because the lupectomy "didn't come back with clean margins," Goodacre said, she had to have another surgery the next day. She also had to undergo radiation, which she said "absolutely wiped me out;" however, did not have to have chemotherapy. For the past five years, she's also taken Tamoxifen, which People described as "an estrogen modulator taken in pill form that helps prevent the development of hormone receptor-positive breast cancers."
The former model and actress admitted that the weight gain she's experienced from taking Tamoxifen, a side effect, has "taken a lot out of my self-confidence." However, her husband told People that "she will always be the most beautiful woman in the world."
As difficult as her treatment was, Goodacre said having to share her diagnosis with her children--Georgia, 21; Sara Kate (Kate), 20; and Charlotte, 15--"broke my heart."
Thankfully, Goodacre is approaching her five-year mark in remission. As a result, she's decided to share her story.
"It wasn't like we were superstitious, like if we said something about behing in the clear, we'd somehow jinx it," she said. "But we wanted to be well on the other side of things before we told everybody. The doctors all say that after the five-year mark, things look optimistic, so we're starting to feel pretty good."