CHICAGO (WLS) -- A Chicago woman has a very special reason to celebrate this Mother's Day. The mother of twins will do so this year cancer-free.
At 39 years old, Candace Marsella always hoped to be a mom.
"I think I've always had a motherly instinct," said Candace Marsella.
A diagnosis of stage 1 cervical cancer and a recommendation to have a hysterectomy was not part of her plan.
"A number of things went through my mind," said Marsella.
Enter Dr. John Lurain, a gynecological oncologist at Northwestern Memorial Hospital, with some options.
"We are able to very often accomplish a cure for their cancer without having to do such radical procedures and therefore maintain their reproductive function," said Dr. John Lurain
Dr Lurain did an isolated surgical procedure that allowed Marsella to go through in-vitro fertilization with a donor and yielded two embryos.
Meet Marsella's twin sons Lucas and Evan.
"I look at them and I truly think to myself I made you, I made you. You're like perfect," said Marsella.
Marsella's twin sons were born three years after her diagnosis and after recent check-ups show her clear of cancer.
"It really is a miracle and meant to be," said Marsella.
"It's a very gratifying job and it's why I come to work every day," said Dr. Lurain.
The twins are now six weeks old.
"I'm blessed to be here with my two boys and just excited to see them grow and us experience new adventures together," said Marsella.
Marsella and Dr. Lurain urge women to have regular gynecological exams as cervical cancer often doesn't have any symptoms.
Her cancer was found early.
Marsella will likely proceed with the hysterectomy as a precaution to ensure she has many more Mother's Days with her boys.
New mom to celebrate Mother's Day cancer-free