Best of Cancerwise 2012: Cancer patient stories of triumph

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This year, some amazing patients have shared their stories with us. We're inspired by the strength, hope and insight they offer.

Here are three of the most memorable patient stories from 2012.

Thanks to cancer, I'm the "girl who has it all"

Rachel Midgett1217.JPGBy Rachel Midgett

My story begins in January of 2009. My husband and I had been married for 11 years and I was about to turn 37. 

We'd been trying to get pregnant for the last three years to no avail, so it was time for us to try in vitro fertilization (IVF). In January 2009 we began the shots, egg harvesting and implantation process. 

By March, I was pregnant. By the end of April, I had miscarried. 

A week before we planned to start round two of IVF, I noticed a lump above my left breast. My reproductive endocrinologist sent me to get a mammogram and ultrasound. 

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JustinOzuna1217.JPGWhat cancer has taught me: Life is a marathon

By Justin Ozuna

Fred Lebow, New York City Marathon co-founder once said, "The marathon is a charismatic event. It has everything. It has drama. It has competition. It has camaraderie. It has heroism. Every jogger can't dream of being an Olympic champion, but he can dream of finishing a marathon."

The same could be said about our fight with cancer.

Instead of winning, we simply hope to overcome. Instead of finishing, we yearn to see our children and grandchildren grow up. The aspiration to live long, inspired, productive lives supplants heroism.

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And then the prince hopped back to his lily pad -- A true story of gratitude

marcy kurtz1217.JPGBy Marcy Kurtz

We all know that fairy tale -- the one where the girl kisses the frog and he turns into a handsome prince and they ride off together happily into the sunset to live forever.

In fact, right now you may be recalling a happy childhood memory where you sat around with your girlfriends giggling about this very thing. I was no different.

I wasn't a little girl when I met my prince. I was fully grown and so was he.

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