My name is Gail McNair. I was born in Derby,Connecticut and resided in New Haven most of my life. I relocated to Baltimore, Maryland in August 1997 and have been graced with a wonderful extended family there. I am 41 years young and the proud mother of two daughters.
My journey began during the summer of 2004. I discovered a lump in my left breast during a shower. I dismissed it initially thinking that it was hormonal related.
In November, 2004 – right after Thanksgiving Holiday – I noticed the same lump and this time my inner alarm went off and I made plans immediately to have an emergency mammogram. The mammogram followed by an ultrasound confirmed my suspicions. I was later diagnosed in January, 2005 following a biopsy. My official diagnosis was “Invasive Ductal Cancer”.
I initially had my heart set at being treated at Johns Hopkins Hospital, besides being a patient there I was also an employee there and had a lot of respect for their Cancer Center, especially there development of a newly designed Breast Cancer Center sponsored jointly by the Avon Foundation. I decided however to move my treatment to New Haven to be closer to family and to slow down a bit. I am currently taking chemotherapy before my surgery as opposed to the traditional treatment plan of surgery, chemotherapy and, if necessary, radiation. The one positive thing about receiving the chemotherapy first is that I can actually feel the tumor shrinking after each treatment; it also gives me confidence of soon becoming totally cancer free with no reoccurrence.
I look forward to the day that I am truly cancer-free and can resume pursuing my life’s purpose. Cancer has brought me face to face with my time left here on earth. As a result I have a strong conviction/resolve no longer to do “business as usual” but to pursue my individual purpose (the reason why God has placed me here on earth to do an assignment that no one else can do but me) with a vengeance. I encourage others on this journey to do the same – we’ve been given a second chance.
I want to take this time to thank my family and friends for all of their prayers, love and support— especially my three guardian angels; my mom and my two daughters.