I Underwent Genetic Testing to Help My Son, and Discovered I Have an Increased Risk of Breast Cancer
What if my son, the boy who has puzzled everyone, has helped to save my life?
What if I have an allergic reaction while flying over the Atlantic and my throat closes up on the plane?
variant of unknown significance
What if it’s too late? What if cancer cells are already hiding in my breasts or ovaries?
Taylor Harris is a writer living in Virginia. Her work has been featured in The Washington Post, Longreads, The Cut, McSweeney’s, and other publications. Her memoir about mothering a son with an unexplainable medical condition is forthcoming from Catapult.
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More by this author
Why I’m No Longer Defending Whiteness
The past two years have solidified my view that America may never change enough for me.
Whiteness Can’t Save Us
Whiteness cannot give us what we need, and this is not a disappointment. This is a testimony.
More Mother, Less Detective: Where I’ve Found Grace Without a Diagnosis for My Son
Not knowing happens to all mothers, and to all of us—if we are breathing, we are without escape from things we can’t know.
More in this series
Living in the “Yet”: When Genetic Tests Don’t Reveal the Answers You Seek
As a mother, I’ve had to ask myself: What would never getting an answer, or even no longer expecting an answer, look like?
What Keeps Me Up at Night: How Do I Meet My Son’s Needs If I Can’t See Them?
This is where, for me, motherhood divided into ‘Before’ and ‘After.’
Two Black Parents Walk Into a Meeting: On Race, Education, and Our Son’s IEP
I’m not just advocating for a child whose challenges don’t follow a script. I’m also a black mother advocating for my black son in a room full of people who don’t look like us.