WASHINGTON, DC (WUSA) --In March 2007 Elizabeth Edwards sat down for an exclusive interview with 9NEWS NOW's Andrea Roane to discuss her battle with cancer.
In this interview, Edwards admitted she did not do regular breast self exams. Plus she wasn't doing annual mammograms.
Like most women, Mrs. Edwards says she was busy. Busy on the campaign trail. Busy being a wife and mother. Busy running a household.
"I was clearly not doing what I needed to do to take care of myself," says Edwards. "I have only myself to blame for this being a tougher and more dangerous process than it had to be."
Mrs. Edwards first discovered a lump back in 2004. The discovery was purely by chance. She was in a shower when she felt a lump the size of a plum.
"I wish I could say I was doing a regular breast self exam in the shower--which is the best place to do it--but I was not," says Edwards.
After her diagnosis, Mrs. Edwards received intense chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation.
"I thought I had a chance to fight so that's what I really wanted. Oddly enough, when I hear an ambulance with the siren going I think there is somebody who has a chance. Because that's why the sirens are going, because they think they can save this person. And that's what I thought about this. I have a chance to fight this," says Edwards.
Fast forward almost 2-and-a-half years later, Mrs. Edwards found herself fighting cancer again. Standing in the same garden where they held their wedding reception 33 years ago, John and Elizabeth Edwards told the world the cancer has returned. It was discovered by accident again. Mrs. Edwards was getting an X-ray done for a sore rib on her left side. The X-ray showed something suspicious on her right rib.
Mrs. Edwards message to other women, when 9NEWS NOW's Andrea Roane spoke with her: Don't neglect your health. Don't wait.
Written by Samara Martin Ewing