Brave Face for 10-Year-Old with Rare Breast Cancer

Remains a kid at heart while fighting "adult" disease

A few months ago, 10-year-old Hannah Powell-Auslam had the usual worries for a kid — her homework and her softball team.
Now, she is dealing with her own survival.

"I feel like a kid inside but sometimes I feel like an adult, when I'm always at the hospital," she told ABC's ABC's "Good Morning, America" in an interview that aired Wednesday.

The fifth-grader at Escalona Elementary School in this Los Angeles bedroom community complained of itching in her side in April. Her mother discovered a lump, and that led to a diagnosis of breast cancer — an extremely rare form.

"Hannah's prognosis is very good and the type of cancer is very slow growing," her father, Jeremy, said in an e-mail Wednesday.

Although she originally was diagnosed with the most common form of breast cancer, the family said that has been changed to invasive secretory carcinoma, a type originally discovered in children in the 1960s.

Children still represent only a fraction of a percent of all breast cancer cases.

Hannah, whose family blogs at, had a mastectomy and has begun chemotherapy.

"You feel like you're sick all the time. You just want to go lay in bed," she said.

The show filmed Hannah getting her head shaved rather than wait for chemotherapy to take its toll. Other family members got buzz cuts, too, in solidarity.

"I might be just a little bit afraid. I love my hair. I worked so hard to grow it," Hannah said before the event.

Hannah was asked if she felt brave and nodded firmly.

"Feel brave all the time," she said.

However, after her haircut, the event at her home became a giggly party as Hannah gleefully tried on new hats.

Hannah has several more rounds of chemotherapy.

As she put it: "I'm a kid fighting an adult disease."

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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