Some questioned ABC News' Amy Robach's decision to aggressively treat her breast cancer with a bilateral mastectomy, but she is now saying, "I got very lucky."
That's because it was only through the surgery that her doctor found a second, previously undetected malignancy, she tells colleagues in a note posted to ABC News on Friday.
"No MRI, no mammogram, no sonogram had found it," she writes.
Additionally, last week's surgery found that her cancer had spread to her sentinel lymph node, "but not beyond, so I will have more treatments ahead of me, but none that will take me out of work.
"My prognosis is good," Robach, 40, says. "As of right now, I plan to head back into the building Monday, Dec. 2, and I couldn't be more excited to get back to work.
"Physically and emotionally, I have been through the ringer, but I am emerging on the other side so much stronger," she adds. "I have a greater appreciation for life, for health and for how such simple acts of kindness can be so incredibly powerful. I am looking through a different lens now."
"Just how it all happened has us still reeling," her co-worker Robin Roberts told Closer Weekly at the Reeve Foundation Gala in New York on Thursday night. "But she's home from the hospital, we've been talking with her. She's eager to continue working as much as she can through the long process, but she's in great spirits, and the surgery went well, and we can't wait to have her back."
Roberts revealed to the magazine that Robach initially resisted getting screened. "She came to me before going on the air to do the mammogram, and I told her about how ... it could help people. And little did we know, she was going to be the one who was going to be helped," Roberts said. "So it has made me relive that time and what a great opportunity we had to educate people.
"I just can't believe it: A year ago, she was there for me," said Roberts, who underwent a bone-marrow transplant in October 2012. "I was home on bed rest, and now I'm here for her."