Wednesday, September 27, 2023

The Faces of Blood Cancer - T-ALL


What was/is your diagnosis?

T-cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (T- ALL).

How did you find out you were sick? What led to your diagnosis?

I was tired, coughing, and bruising. I thought maybe I had low iron. I went for a blood test. I found out when I went to see the hematologist. 

What were your first thoughts when diagnosed?

I was in shock...told the doctor I couldn't stay because I didn't have any pjs 🙂 but I was admitted right away.

What did your treatment consist of?

I did the debate Farber pediatric protocol

What is your current medical status? 

I've been in remission since November 2016, finished treatment in November 2018.

What was your life like before your diagnosis? 

Before cancer I was on the go all the time.

How is life different for you now post diagnosis?

Life after cancer my saying is “The mind is willing but sometimes the body isn't able.” which gets frustrating.  Still dealing with chemo brain though it gets less as time goes on.

Has your cancer diagnosis affected any of the relationships in your life? If so, how, and how are you managing them?

For relationships some people walked out of my life and some walked in. I don't blame those that walked out because maybe I would've done the same.

How has your cancer experience affected your body image, and your relationship to your body? 

I gained 80lbs and still have 60lbs on but I've come to accept that.

Based on your own experience, what advice would you give others that were diagnosed with the same type of blood cancer?

My piece of advice contact LLSC and get a peer supporter through their peer support program, it was a game changer for me. Having someone my own age to talk to that had the same diagnosis and received the same treatment as me.

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