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pain in his chest. He was referred to an oncologist the same day. It took less than a week for my world to crumble around me, and he went from working on his cherished vintage car to signing over the title to someone new to help pay for cancer treatments. In my family, I took the devastating news the hardest as my uncle was like a father-figure to me, and I began to disconnect from the world. I pretended it didn’t exist, but the truth was that it was very much present and it was aggressive like a destructive tornado rushing through not only my uncle, but our entire family and friends. You see, when a family member gets cancer, it’s like everyone has the disease, because it is so crippling emotionally and physically.
I received my BA in Political Science and International Relations in the spring of 2017. For the first time in a while, I felt this strange feeling of happiness, after realizing how far I’ve come in my education I was especially proud that I made my uncle’s milestone. He wanted to see me graduate college, and he did. Watching my ceremony over Facetime, his smile was from ear to ear. My uncle unfortunately died from the disease in the summer of 2017. After initial pain, shock, and sadness of my deceased family member started to slowly fade and the lingering throb of sadness pulsated in my body for weeks on end in an endless loop of a nightmare, I decided I needed to do something to help people like my uncle and their families. I completely reversed my career choices, I began to revoke my applications to law schools that summer and decided upon an education in medicine. I am currently pursuing a master’s degree in Physician Assistant with a focus on Oncology. I am applying to Physician Assistant schools this summer, hoping to start next summer if accepted.
My uncle is not just a simple statistic. He is much more than that and Stage IV Mesothelioma will not define him. The people diagnosed with mesothelioma are real loving people, and like myself, most people think it will not happen to them or anyone they love when in fact “research shows more than 20 million people in the United States are at risk of developing malignant mesothelioma due to asbestos exposure” (“Mesothelioma”). Awareness about asbestos is extremely crucial for every individual to be knowledgeable of, to prevent this crippling disease or catch it in the early stages. Just education alone about asbestos seems to sim.............
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