Stephanie Hosford Survivor
Bald, Fat & Crazy
Having a baby is a monumental, life-altering experience, so is adopting a child; being diagnosed with cancer comes with its own transformative, emotional and physical entanglements. Now, imagine what it would be like to experience all three at once. I didn’t have to imagine it, I lived it. An occupational therapist, tri-athlete and mother of one, I was 37-years-old and in the midst of adopting a daughter from China. But then I discovered a hard, chick-pea-sized lump in my breast. The lump turned out to be Stage 1 breast cancer and within days of my diagnosis I also discovered I was pregnant. As I tried to understand how I, a healthy, non-smoker with no family history of breast cancer, could have this disease, I also had to decide whether or not I could keep the baby that was growing inside me. I ended up going through surgery and chemotherapy while pregnant. We adopted our daughter and I gave birth to another within two months of each other. This was nearly eight years ago and I am still cancer free. I have three beautiful, feisty children and we are all happy and thriving.