Marie A. Harris

Marie A. Harris Image

I was born and raised in New Haven, Connecticut. In 1985, after taking a bath, I started to do my usual breast exam and noticed an unusual lump in my left breast. The next day I called the doctor and came in for a breast exam and mammogram. The mammogram showed that there was something abnormal in my breast. I then had a biopsy done and it showed cancer. At that moment I started to get scared and the first thing that came to mind was death because of my family history. My great-grandmother and my grandmother died from cancers – esophageal and pancreatic respectfully. Plus, my mother had breast cancer. Because of my cancer’s growth, I had to have an immediate mastectomy. During this mastectomy process they removed my left breast and lymph nodes from my left arm. I did not have radiation or chemotherapy but I did need physical therapy for my left arm. In 1995, after several benign biopsies, I had my right breast removed to prevent a repeat of breast cancer on the right side. After talking with my surgeon, I decided to have reconstruction surgery. This consisted of removing muscles, skin and tissue from my abdomen and placing it on my chest wall. With God’s grace and prayers from family and friends, I have fought breast cancer. I am proud to say I am a Survivor and member of the Sisters’ Journey organization.