In November 2016, Gina was diagnosed with Stage II Hodgkins lymphoma (nodular sclerosis). She had just started her second year at Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences where she studies diagnostic medical imaging in the sonography program which is an accelerated three year bachelor program. In addition to being a full time student, she works Friday evenings and 10 hour shifts on Saturday and Sunday at an Urgent Care Center.
Our family was in shock, somehow she took the diagnosis extremely well and always kept a positive attitude. Her treatment would be six months of chemotherapy every two weeks. In the beginning, we as her parents thought she would have to quit her job and stop attending classes in order to dedicate all of herself to fighting this cancer. However, Gina had other plans. She was determined not to let this side track her education, which she knew if she had to stop would cause her a delay of an entire year because of the accelerated program she was enrolled in.
She scheduled her treatments in between her classes. We were unsure how long she could keep up this rigorous schedule, but she managed to do it, despite the nausea and fatigue. She even achieved a 3.5 which got her on the Dean's List. Our family, friends, and community were amazing.
The cards and well wishes were endless, special deliveries to keep her spirits up seemed never ending. When her hair started to fall out, she knew she was going to shave it off! She was determined to be in control of this situation, and amazingly she was. This tiny five-foot powerhouse of a young woman was managing it all with such poise.
In June 2017, she completed her treatments. She never missed a class or a day of school. In August 2017 she was retested and is now in full remission. She is an inspiration to young and old and we are blessed to call her our Daughter.