December 05, 2013 2:41pm PT by Hilary Lewis
Amy Robach Returns to 'GMA,' Plans to Keep Working During Chemo (Video)
ABC News correspondent Amy Robach returned to Good Morning America on Thursday, a little more than three weeks after she announced that an on-air mammogram in October revealed she had breast cancer.
Since then Robach, 40, has had a double mastectomy, during which doctors found a second malignant tumor, additional problems in her left breast and that the cancer had spread to her sentinel lymph node, meaning she'll need to undergo four months of chemotherapy.
"That was the devastating news for me," Robach said on GMA. "When I woke up, the first question I asked was, 'Did it spread to my lymph nodes?' because that's the difference between chemo and no chemo."
Robach made the choice to have a double mastectomy, which she said "turned out to be the right choice" because of what doctors found when she underwent the procedure.
The correspondent, who previously worked for NBC, begins chemotherapy Dec. 16, but she plans to keep working, following the model of GMA co-anchor Robin Roberts.
Robach also said that Roberts has inspired her.
"You give me strength, Robin, because it is important to get up and have something to do each day, even if you don't feel great," Robach said. "Some people have it harder than I do, so I will take it hour-by-hour."
She's also taken Roberts' advice to take things hour-by-hour and day-by-day to heart.
"What it forces you to do is live in the moment and I think that's a good lesson for everyone," Robach said. "There are days where if you really start to let your mind wander, it's fairly devastating. But you keep your head together. You come into work. You hug your friends and you're thankful to be where you are with your family and the people who matter."
Robach, who's married to Melrose Place alum Andrew Shue, also recalled that at Thanksgiving she said she was thankful to be alive.
"It's good to know that you get to be thankful to be alive," she said. "It's a reminder to all of us that you never know what's around the corner."
Robach also echoed her earlier remarks about how she had put off getting a mammogram and that the one she underwent on-air likely saved her life.
"I had had that prescription [to get a mammogram] for a full year and I didn't go and, you know, cancer spreads, and the sooner you get it the better your prognosis" she said. "With the FDA regulations being that woman can wait until they're 50, it was my excuse to say, 'Eh, I can wait a couple of years. Some doctors say 40. Some people say 50. Maybe I'll split the difference.' Well that could've meant, probably would have meant the difference between life and death for me. Forty, for me, was the right time, but 39 probably would've been better."