As Mia started her third grade year at elementary school she began complaining of pain in her legs. At first, her mom just thought it was normal growing pains. But then Mia started sleeping a lot more, lost her appetite and just didn’t have her normal level of energy. Mia’s parents, Alma and Ernesto, decided it was time to take her to the doctor.
Thinking it was a virus the doctor sent her home with a round of antibiotics and prescription for rest. Three days later, Mia was vomiting and feeling worse. This time the doctor ordered blood work. Within an hour, Alma received a call that Mia might need a blood transfusion and the family should head to Stanford immediately.
Over the next day, more tests were done and on September 5, 2018, Mia’s family received the devastating news that she had acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL).
Over the next year, the family learned more about leukemia and cancer treatments than they could ever want to know. Mia endured months of chemo – going to Stanford for infusions twice weekly for a year. She also had an emergency appendectomy and all of the subsequent side effects.
Mia was unable to attend school and Alma, a CNA, left her job in order to care for Mia during all of the challenges. Slowly but surely, the medicine started doing its job! Mia was able to begin her maintenance phase of treatment in September 2019.
She also started back at school and is enjoying being a 4th grader! She now only needs to be at Stanford once a month and is feeling much more like herself.
Mia’s dad, Ernesto says, “I knew we were getting our girl back when she started making fun of me again.” Mia is full of sunshine and her joyful personality helped her warrior through all of the hard times of the first year of her cancer diagnosis. Her fight is not over, but she is ready to take it on!