Benefit held in Gates to honor mom Michelle Giancursio-Graser | Community Service
Benefit Bash in honor of Michelle Giancursio-Graser will be held Sunday, Nov. 20 in Gates.
Graser, 42, was diagnosed with breast cancer on Aug. 18 — a week before her oldest son, Ian, left for college.
As a speech language pathologist at Rochester General Hospital, she said she’s had a different experience than most and sees the disease in a different way.
“For me, I have to take the disease and take it separately — as a separate entity. I’m not diseased, there is this disease,” she said.
She is getting a double mastectomy to fight the disease and had her first surgery last month.
Because of her relationship with the hospital, she’s had more opportunities to study the disease, was able to look at the tumor under a microscope.
“It’s frightening for me to get all these opportunities,” she said.
Graser found the cancerous lump the November before she was diagnosed and went to get it checked out. She was told them that it didn’t look like cancer. After more visits and more tests, it wasn’t until August that Graser was diagnosed.
“It definitely knocked me for a loop,” she said of the diagnosis.
Graser is the mother of two: Ian, 18, and Kieran, 15, who attends Greece Arcadia High School.
Funds garnered from the benefit will help defray the costs associated including the cost of the loss Graser being out of work for six to nine months.
Graser said her advice to all women is to always “be an advocate for yourself.”