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Inspirational Stories

Catherine

Leukemia Survivor

Chandler, AZ

In March 2014, I woke up at my normal time to get ready for work. I could barely move - I was so ill and every part of my body hurt. I didn't’t think anything of being sick since I had started to feel ill on Sunday and it was just getting worse. I figured that I would stay home sick and be back to work the next day.

By the time my husband got home from work my fever was up to 103. I was starting to show symptoms for pneumonia, and my husband didn’t like how high my fever was. He rushed me to the ER where the doctor agreed I had an acute case of pneumonia. The doctor told me that after a round of antibiotics I would be back to normal.

It turned out I couldn’t go home because my white blood count was dangerously low. That night, I was admitted to the hospital and after four days of testing the doctors finally conducted a bone marrow biopsy. The doctors said that it could possibly be leukemia. In April 2016, I was diagnosed with acute promyelocytic leukemia and began treatment later that night.

The treatment I was on, and the only proven treatment for a cure was not working for me. I had to make some very difficult decisions in less than an hour. There was never a moment of doubt, I needed to fight hard.

I had a smile on my face throughout the whole fight and even still. That first stay in the hospital lasted 54 days. I have been in remission for three years and my doctor has hopes that I will be cured of leukemia by 2018.

Today, I love looking forward to the future and living every day to the fullest. Being 25 and having to fight for my life has changed my whole outlook on life. I try my hardest to help other young adults diagnosed with cancer, and I hope to be an oncology nurse in the near future.

catherine