Two years ago, when she was just 8-years-old, Chrissy Turner's parents took her to the hospital after she complained about a painful lump under her right nipple. Soon after that visit, doctors diagnosed Turner with secretory breast carcinoma, a rare form of breast cancer.
Chrissy is thought to be the youngest person ever diagnosed with breast cancer and now, after celebrating her 10th birthday, the youngest to have survived it.
"We’d like people to know that she’s happy and still enjoys bringing beauty to the simple things in life," Chrissy's mother, Annette Turner, told People.
Turner had a mastectomy to remove the tissue from her right breast in 2015 and although she hasn't hit puberty yet, she won't grow breast tissue on that side of her body. So, she and her parents recently met with a plastic surgeon to talk about reconstructive surgery when the time comes, which they expect will be around when she's 15 or 16-years-old.
What her parents, Annette and Troy, really want people to know is that even though their daughter went through this terrible, scary thing, she's still an average little girl who loves dragons and Legos and painting her nails. But to some, she's so much more than that.
Since surviving her breast cancer, Turner has been participating in events to help raise money and awareness. In fact, the whole family participates and has a special take in the cause. Both of Turner's parents are also cancer survivors. Before Turner was diagnosed, Annette had battled cervical cancer and Troy was still living with Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma when they got the news of Turner's breast cancer.
"We’ve all had such close brushes with cancer," Annette Turner told Metro. "It’s really aligned us."
For those still battling breast cancer, Turner's mother says she is an inspiration.
"Chrissy carries a glowing spirit with her wherever she goes," Annette Turner told People. "She’s teaching others — especially women diagnosed with breast cancer — to embrace life and focus on the good. If anything, that’s been her most powerful message: 'You can defeat this and you can keep living.'"
Refinery29 has reached out to Annette Turner and will update this story when we receive a response.
October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. For more stories about detecting, treating, or living with breast cancer, click here.
Welcome to Mothership: Parenting stories you actually want to read, whether you're thinking about or passing on kids, from egg-freezing to taking home baby and beyond. Because motherhood is a big if — not when — and it's time we talked about it that way.
Read these stories next: