chemo

‘My principal told me, ‘Some kids just like to be bullied.’ She stared squarely at my parents. ‘Unless it involves blood, don’t call me.’ I felt so alone.’

“All of my materials were stolen and vandalized. I would barter with my bullies. ‘If you’ll be nice to me for one lunch hour or recess, I’ll give you my lunch.’ I literally gave them everything I had, but everything wasn’t enough. There wasn’t a single morning I didn’t beg my mother to not make me go.”

‘I was asked if I had any questions. All I could manage to mumble was, ‘Will I lose my hair?’ I was 16. I was in high school. I was a girl. I couldn’t be bald. I just couldn’t.’

“Three words. That’s all it took. Three simple words. Everything was happening too fast. I just sat there, staring at the wall, trying not cry. When homecoming came, I had this beautiful red dress. I put on heels, makeup. Then I looked in the mirror and crumbled to the ground. What was I thinking? I looked ridiculous. I looked sick.”

‘Come feel this,’ the doctor said. I put my hand on her belly. My heart sank.’ Mom recalls daughter’s rare cancer diagnosis after thinking it was just an ‘umbilical cord hernia’

“I snapped the traditional well-check picture of my daughter sitting on the exam table, bragging about our healthy girl. We were about to walk out with a good bill of health when the doctor asked me if I had any concerns. That’s when I remembered her large tummy. He laid her down on the exam table, and his face quickly changed to reflect my concern.”

‘After the diagnosis, we found out we were pregnant. It sent chills down my spine. All I could think was, ‘We don’t have enough time! How am I supposed to raise my children without him?’

“We were excited and broken. For much of my pregnancy, I struggled knowing that my baby would never meet the greatest man ever. He had this thing where he nicknamed each child on delivery day. Pistol, Bullet, Slug, and Cricket. There was so much anticipation for him to walk into that delivery room and call him by his ‘name’.”

‘Does it hurt?’ I gave birth to beautiful twins, hemorrhaged, and then felt a lump on my breast.’: Mom mistakes Breast Cancer for ‘clogged milk duct,’ says ‘cancer may have started this fight, but I’ll finish it’

“I wake up to see nurses running around, pushing my crying husband into the corner. His face goes white. They’re pushing on my stomach, which was just cut open to birth our twin boys, to push out the blood. All I could think was, ‘How? I’m a healthy 25 year old with a 21-month-old and 2 newborns.’ In that moment, I knew I had to be strong.”

‘Mom, my hip really hurts.’ She spiked a fever. I went to bed that night screaming, ‘Please don’t take my baby!’: 16-year-old girl diagnosed with Bone cancer, shows up to prom ‘proud, bald, and beautiful’

“Mattie complained pain was radiating down the back of her leg. ‘Welcome to the club. You’ve inherited our family hip problems!’ I really didn’t think much of it. Then, a light bulb went off. ‘Don’t you think it’s strange she’s just 16 and has this much pain?’ After blood work and an x-ray, we learned the fateful news. I looked at my sweet, beautiful girl and could not believe it.”

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