Mom with cancer surprised with custom wig made of friends' hair
[July 28, 2020: GMA]
In the middle of the coronavirus pandemic, as she was working full-time and taking care of her two young daughters, Dana McSwain was diagnosed with Stage 2 breast cancer that had spread to her lymph nodes.
The 36-year-old from Charlotte, North Carolina, had no known family history of breast cancer but on top of her diagnosis, McSwain also learned she had the BRCA2 gene mutation.
"It was a complete shock," McSwain told "Good Morning America." "It’s not just you have stage 2 cancer, it’s you have stage 2 cancer with this genetic mutation that makes you susceptible to even more cancers. It’s a battle for the rest of my life."
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Less than two weeks after her diagnosis, McSwain, who also has an 18-year-old stepson, started chemotherapy.
Shortly after that, McSwain faced a moment she had been dreading since her diagnosis -- the loss of her hair due to the chemotherapy treatments.
"You kind of accept the cancer diagnosis and move on to the next step. So now I’ve accepted cancer and prepared myself to go through chemo, which means losing my hair," she said. "As a woman, your hair may not define you but it sets you apart. I’ve always had long hair and I started to mourn that even before it was gone."
"I remember my second chemo was on a Thursday and that following Saturday morning I took a shower and washed my hair and it came out in handfuls," said McSwain. "I got out of the shower that day and looked in the mirror and texted my whole family and said, ‘It’s time to shave my head.’" ... MORE