MADISON, Tenn. - A Madison musician is in the fight of her life trying to beat breast cancer that doctors found back in March, but the battle of fighting that burden isn't just hers.
"Everyday I wake up I'm thankful. I've had a left mastectomy so far," Amber Rose McLemore explained about the lump she found earlier this year.
Amber spends most of her days in her home studio recording voice overs for local radio and television commercials. The aspiring musician has even released a music video for a song she recently wrote, but when her doctor uttered the phrase "it's cancer" everything changed.
"Two out of three women that get diagnosed with breast cancer survive so it's still, two out of three still is a scary number for me," she said.
"I can't treat her, I can't make her well. I can't take the cancer away. Sometime I say 'God just give me the cancer;' I know it doesn't work like that but I would if I could but there's not a way, there's nothing you can do and as a husband and you feel helpless," Amber's husband Shane said about the last few months.
Six months into her diagnosis the 32-year-old should be in the middle of intense chemotherapy, but weeks before getting the life altering diagnosis Amber received some other life-altering news.
"I was pregnant. I was 10 weeks and 5 days exactly and all I thought about was we're going to lose the baby, we're going to lose it all," she recalled.
The couple had to make a decision: should they delay chemotherapy and radiation treatment that might kill the baby? But doing that could kill Amber.
"This happened for a reason and I'm not giving him up because I had a feeling that we both were gonna be fine. It was never a thought, not once, so this baby is meant to be here and he's gonna be here and I'm gonna watch him grow and I would never have it any other way," Amber said.
Amber was set to be induced on September 10, some four weeks early, but her doctors were worried that the baby's lung might have been damaged from some of the chemotherapy Amber had undergone.
"I just want to hear him cry, that to me will be the best thing," she said from her hospital bed.
"I just hope that his lungs are fine and have matured enough," Shane added.
With the odds stacked against him and with one big scream Brantley McLemore came into the world at 4:44 p.m. on September 10, weighing a little more than 5 pounds.
"This isn't over yet and so badly I want it to be because I don't know what I would do if I couldn't be in his life. But he's given me so much more of a reason to fight and we're gonna get through this," Amber said as she held her newborn son.
Amber will restart her chemotherapy in a few weeks.
Students in the Academy of Energy and Power at Maplewood are busy getting ready for next week's Project Expo and had the opportunity to show it off some of their projects to Tennessee Congressman Jim Cooper.