Nine years ago a very young and frightened woman stood in the parking lot of a medical building, hugging her fiancee as the life she hadn’t yet lived suddenly loomed in jeopardy. The wedding she was just beginning to plan, marriage, a career, pregnancy, motherhood…. the future that was so big in her youthful eyes.

She had a small lump in her left breast and was about to go get an ultrasound. Her paternal grandmother had breast cancer late in life, which was enough to make the possibility frighteningly plausible. She had a tearful prayer in the arms of the young man she couldn’t wait to marry and then made her way inside to discover what would become of her.  

The ultrasound technician squeezed the gel onto her chest and then waved the wand over the small lump. After a few minutes , the tech went to get the radiologist for her opinion, which of course incites the fears of the young woman. But the doctor who came determined the lump to be nothing but a temporary cyst that would heal in time. The oh-so-young woman, awash in relief, left to return comfortably into her life that was unfolding with normalcy and good-fortune.

She was innocent and happy; she was perfectly healthy - or so she will think for another nine years.

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