She found him on her 25th birthday. It was unfathomable that someone so young, someone who had survived a coma and traumatic brain injury, whose mom was undergoing ovarian cancer treatments, should have to deal with this.
But she was the invincible ABM. Double mastectomy? Done. Radiation? Sure. Chemo? Lets do it. Who needs hair?
She was pretty amazing through the whole thing -- wearing her tiara to chemo, rocking her wig, smiling and laughing her infectious laugh. My mother-in-law became a resource for her. Even showed Mandy her reconstructed boobs. I wish either of them were here to do the same for me.
A little more than 6 months after we lost my mother-in-law, Mandy relapsed. Her 30th birthday was spent surrounded by friends and family, some of whom she saw for the last time that weekend.
But she didn't have BRCA1 or 2 for that matter. She did every single thing she could, but she still couldn't win.
Can I win? Can I do something with this knowledge?