The pain in Ashley Bridges’ knee first appeared during springtime of 2012. After numerous trips to the doctor, Bridges was told that the pain was something she’d have to deal with throughout her life. But aside from the discomfort, Ashley didn’t have much to complain about – the 24-year-old was in a healthy, loving relationship and had a healthy son, Braiden. On top of that, Ashley was 10-weeks pregnant with the newest member of the family. Around that time, the pain in her knee worsened and eventually left her unable to walk. She was told to see a specialist but instead opted for the emergency room, as the pain was now unbearable. The young mother was met with terrifying news – she had bone cancer.
Ashley underwent a lengthy surgery in which doctors replaced her knee and removed most of her femur. Upon completion of the surgery, doctors suggest that she begin chemotherapy immediately – but it came with a catch. The treatments were likely to harm the being of her unborn daughter, and because of that, Ashley couldn’t go through with it. This decision to delay treatment would allow the cancer to spread throughout Ashley’s body and ultimately kill her, but she put her child first, “I’m not going to kill a healthy baby because I’m sick. There’s nothing wrong with her. Her life is just as important as mine if not more important. I mean as a mother my job is to protect my kids.”
Lindsey Natzic-Villatoro, who helped put together Ashley’s wedding last minute, had this to say about the mother’s brave decision, “I think that this has helped express to others who have never had children the depth of actually a mom’s love — the selflessness. It’s just like the best example that she has shown the entire world. So for that, she is definitely one of the most bravest people that I’ve ever met.”
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