KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Five months after Amber Lewis gave birth to twin boys, she discovered something was wrong.
"I had just finished breastfeeding a couple of months before. I was just in the shower and noticed something wasn't right. I kind of chalked it up to a clogged milk duct and went to my doctor just to make sure everything was okay," Lewis recalled.
Several tests and a few days later, Lewis was diagnosed with stage three breast cancer. She immediately began treatment.
"It was almost a blur sometimes. You're just getting over being sleep-deprived, caring for two. Then, you get this put on your plate, and it's a lot to handle. Thankfully, we have an amazing support system of friends and family. Everyone rallied around us and helped care for me and our babies," Lewis said.
Lewis said she always knew family history might play a role, but she always assumed it would come from her mother's side.
"Know your family history, both sides of the family. It doesn’t matter. You should know where you stand with this," Lewis said. "Every time I would tell a doctor when they would ask for family history, I would say my paternal grandmother. They would say, 'It's okay. No big deal,' and that's exactly where it came from."
Lewis has the BRCA 2 gene mutation and found out her sister has it as well.
"She's been on her journey this year going through prophylactic surgery to make sure this isn't her story too," Lewis said.
A year out from radiation and all finished with chemotherapy, Lewis' biggest challenge these days is keeping up with twin toddlers, and she's savoring every moment.
Knoxville will host the 2019 Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure on Oct. 19.
The race raises money for the Susan G. Komen foundation which supports the fight against breast cancer. It will start and end in Worlds Fair Park and winds around the perimeter of downtown Knoxville.