In 2018, I was diagnosed with stage 2 Hodgkin lymphoma, at just 28 years old. I underwent 12 chemotherapy treatments and was deemed in remission, until approximately five months later, I relapsed. I received a stem cell transplant in April 2020 and this was extremely tough because it was in the height of the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown in Florida, where I live with my husband and five-year-old daughter. It’s extremely scary to be so vulnerable in the middle of a life-threatening procedure and a global pandemic without being able to see your family.
Today, it’s been over a year since my transplant and thanks to the love and support of my family and support systems, I am in remission. While I’m incredibly grateful to be alive, I’ve experienced harsh long-term side effects of my treatments. Upon seeking help for what I thought was just “chemo-brain” I was diagnosed with worsened ADHD and I have also had to deal with the devastation of infertility.
I have been so happy with support I’ve received from The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) throughout my cancer journey. Unfortunately, cancer puts a huge financial strain on someone and LLS has provided financial assistance during a time when I needed it most. In addition, I have also participated in two Light The Night walks to raise money and give back to the mission. LLS has made me realize that when you are diagnosed with cancer you truly gain an entire family of cancer patients, survivors, and thrivers.