Dayna Varano is a mother of four who says her youngest daughter saved her life. If she hadn't started teething at two-and-a-half months, she would have continued to breast feed and never gone to the doctor to treat the clogged milk duct that turned out to be an 8 cm tumor. Her doctor originally told her it was nothing and to come back when she was 40, but she instinctually knew something was wrong. She sought out another opinion and was diagnosed with breast cancer stage III at age 39 and was told she had a 50 percent chance of living five years. Varano cannot stress enough how important it is to go with such instincts. "Know your body and don’t ever let anyone tell you what's normal for you."
If she had listened to the first doctor, she may have not just passed her five year cancer-free anniversary. Today, she is a member of YSC in New York City and acts as a chair for its annual In Living Pink Gala. "When I was sick, YSC was my saving grace, which is why I am still with them volunteering my time," Varano says. "You feel so alone when you are diagnosed. After a certain age the medical community supports you with information of what to do, but when you're young it's different. My doctor told me to come back when I was 40. I probably would have been clinically dying at that point. So it was really comforting to be around young girls surviving and doing well."