Welcome Everyone…… And thank you so much for stopping by!
I am a 29 year old survivor of Pre-B-Cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. I was diagnosed on November 23, 2013 and I just finished maintenance treatment on February 28, 2016, which also happened to be my 29th birthday. I am excited (albeit a little intimidated) to share my post-chemotherapy journey.
I hope that by sharing my experiences I will be able to inspire and connect with other young adults in the cancer community in addition to raising awareness about blood cancers; however, I am going to be flexible about the direction of the blog itself. I have always enjoyed journaling and this seems like a more active way to dive into that creative outlet. Other topics I plan on discussing: Faith, Family, DIY, Travel, and Education.
A little bit more about me:
I was always healthy growing up. The worst thing I ever had was pneumonia in 1st grade. Blood cancers do not run in my family, although my paternal Step Grandfather passed away from chronic leukemia when I was about five years old.
The doctors told me they don’t know why I got sick – they called it a ‘perfect storm,’ one cell mutates and the rest follow. My first question to them when they told me I had leukemia was, “Is there any reason to believe you won’t be able to cure me?”…. Ok, maybe that was my second question because my first question was, “Am I going to lose my hair?”. Yes I would lose my hair. As far as a cure – they said they were going to do their best but they couldn’t promise anything.
I am an only child, which at the time of diagnosis represented the reality that a bone marrow donor would be difficult to find. I am close with both of my parents and am thankful that our relationships have gotten stronger throughout this experience. I have two tuxedo rescue kitties – “The Boys” also known as Scaredy and Scrappy; they are 5 year old brothers and they are spoiled rotten. They got me through some dark days when I couldn’t get out of bed; seemed like they were trying to heal me with their purrs. I had the best snuggle buddies ever.
I went to college in Lubbock, Texas at Texas Tech and graduated with a Bachelors in Business Administration with a concentration in Finance in 2009. After attending a small private high school I loved my time at Tech; enrollment when I was there was about 28,000. Moving back to New Mexico after graduation was a tough transition. Following the market crash it was extremely difficult to find an entry level finance position, but I was eventually hired at a Radiology company as an Accounting Assistant.
Fast forward to 2013, I had been working at the radiology company for almost three and a half years and was on track for a second promotion; I was about to fly to Rome over the Thanksgiving holiday to get engaged to my then boyfriend. It felt like all of my “plans” were coming together. The day before we were supposed to get on that plane I went to urgent care around 10am and by 11pm I was admitted to the Oncology unit where I would stay for the next 30 days. Surreal felt like an understatement.
My life now is completely different in all of the best ways. I converted to Catholicism and my faith has never been stronger. I was given a second chance and it is my prayer that I will never forget that or take it for granted. I strive to begin every day thanking God that I’m here and I have another day to honor and serve Him.
I am in a new relationship that is healthy, happy, and loving. Our lifestyles are actually compatible and it took me quite a few years to figure out how important that is. His name is Matt. We just celebrated our one-year anniversary on February 12 and I am so thrilled that I get to do life with him ❤
My biggest aspiration for my near future is to become a nurse or nurse practitioner with a Oncology concentration. I enjoy crunching numbers and doing accounting work – making everything balance, but I can also really see making a career out of healthcare.
One of my favorite pieces of advice from my therapist – “better choices yield better results” – sometimes it really is that simple.
Thanks for reading and I hope you check back soon for updates! I’ve activated the contact page, so if there is something you’d like to ask please feel free to do so.