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Meredith Israel Thomas
I was 25 years old when I found my first lump through a self exam. I had two biopsies and both were benign. The lump began to grow they did a lumpectomy a year later. The doctors then told me, ‘they would see me when I was 40.’ In December of 2008 I requested a mammogram. My doctor told me that I was 35 and there was no need. I insisted as my grandma had breast cancer and after hearing a few stories I wanted to be safe. They found two lumps in my right breast but told me they were nothing and they would recheck them in six months. In June 2009 I found a mass under my armpit. After my mammo and ultrasounds they said it looked ‘suspicious.’ On June 16th they told me I had stage 2 breast cancer, but after my scans I received a fax that would change life forever. A day after my 36th birthday while I was home alone with my daughter I was told I had stage 4 Breast Cancer (BRACA 2) and it had spread to my liver, lymph nodes, spine, ribs and other bones. I had a 20 month old daughter and thought life was over. There was no need for a mastectomy as it spread so quickly and I would never go into remission.
I have been on nine different forms of treatment since my battle began and I will turn three years old in June. I dedicate my time to my daughter, my family and to helping raise awareness for early detection. My fight with cancer has not been easy, but I will keep fighting until my time comes. I take advantage of every minute I get with my family and watching my baby girl grow up.