After fertility struggles, breast cancer survivor becomes mom of three

Five years after they got married, high school sweethearts Aly and Josh Taylor felt ready to grow their family. Aly had read that sore breasts could be a pregnancy symptom, so she examined her own, hoping she was pregnant. During the exam, she felt a small lump. Because she was so young, she assumed it was nothing to worry about. But she got it checked out to be safe. After a biopsy in her Louisiana hometown, she was diagnosed with stage III triple-negative breast cancer. Aly was in shock. “I just couldn’t believe it was true. I was 24 years old, about to start a family and had just begun my Ph.D. program in marriage and family therapy,” Aly says. Triple-negative breast cancer treatment at MD Anderson Aly’s local doctor encouraged her to travel to MD Anderson for treatment. Aly is grateful for that recommendation. “When you’ve just received a cancer diagnosis, you are in probably one of the most vulnerable places in your life,” Aly says. “Everyone on my MD Anderson team was incredible. Each person played a vital role in my healing process.” For six months, Aly received chemotherapy. She first underwent 12 weeks of Taxol, followed by 12 weeks of Fluorouracil, Adriamycin and Cytoxan (FAC). After that, Aly underwent a bilateral mastectomy, followed by 30 radiation treatments. She then had several breast reconstruction surgeries with Mark Villa, M.D. “I underestimated the time I would spend with this doctor, as he was the one I spent the most time with through multiple surgeries, drains and tissue expansions,” Aly says. “He answered all my questions through the tears...