Patients

The stories and experiences in this category are written by people currently going through treatments for cancer. Read these stories to find inspiration and know that you are not alone in your fight with cancer.

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Fight Stubborn with Stubborn

by Amber Takesh September 29, 2022

One day I’m a normal 22-year-old girl, living and working in a new city. You hear awful things, you see crazy storylines on TV and in the movies, and you never imagine these bad things could ever happen to you. As humans, we take our health for granted until you realize how valuable it really is. 

In March of 2021, I was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia, a rare form of blood cancer. Everything paused, everything was turned upside down, and everything was terrifying.

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A Season of Healing

by Rachel Vinciguerra August 16, 2022

They said it would get harder as I go, and it’s getting harder.

The side effects from my sixth chemo treatment were the worst I’ve had so far. The fatigue over the weekend was intense and left me feeling too weak to move. Talking and breathing were a big effort.

Instead of going away and leaving me with some light nausea into the week, the fatigue lightened but hasn’t lifted. It’s really hard to effectively explain the feeling of being so weak.

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This is My Journey So Far

by Tiffany Grabowski August 15, 2022

It’s been a long past two and a half years for me. The pandemic hit me hard. I lost my grandfather and grandmother due to COVID, lost my job, and had two minor surgeries on my uterus for fibroids one year apart. Just when I thought it was about to be a good year in 2022, February 23, 2022 is when it all started.

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Am I Surviving “Right”?

by Jessica Mace August 10, 2022

I thought I had never experienced survivor’s guilt. The idea of guilt over surviving didn’t fit with the way I understand my feelings about the trauma of cancer, which we know can have many layers for us young adults. In the losses I’ve experienced since becoming a part of this community, I have felt utter heartbreak, outrage at how unfair life can be, and despair over the realization that we are not in control. But not guilt over being alive. Or so I thought.

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Listen to Your Body

by Anna Payne August 4, 2022

For 34 years, I’ve choked down close to 50 pills a day, as part of a daily regimen to manage cystic fibrosis. But one bitter pill I wasn’t prepared to swallow was hearing the words, “You have Stage IV colon cancer.”

I think about the doctor’s words now as I grieve the life I almost got to have, one that seems like a distant dream. The nightmare call came less than two years after I started TriKafta, a life-changing drug that turned a death sentence into a chronic illness, managed with medications and treatments.

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“Were You Late?”

by Ruth Arnold August 1, 2022

I had been waiting in the white room for 45 minutes. I had left on time, gotten to the giant facility on time, and taken a full day off of work at a crucial time to make sure I was there. My oncologist is hard to get appointments with. That’s a huge understatement.

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Cancer is a Lot of Things

by Laura Armour July 22, 2022

Cancer is a lot of things. It can be a terrorist, ripping the visions of your future from your mind and replacing them with a plethora of fear. It can be a teacher of perspective, showing you gratitude for the simplicity and fragility of life, beckoning you to soak in the small moments with your loved ones because you’re never truly sure of how many you have left.

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Dear Cancer, What Should I Say to You?

by April Kemen June 20, 2022

Dear Cancer,

What should I say to you?

Maybe I will start by complaining to you about all the tests, scans, appointments, needle pokes, surgeries, and medications I have endured because of you.

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Dear Cancer, I Never Agreed to be With You

by Norma Marquez June 8, 2022

Dear Cancer,

May 1, 2022, will be our four-year anniversary. From day one, this “relationship” has only been one sided. I never agreed to be with you and for this to be a “‘till death do us part” commitment. I don’t even know how we became an “item.”

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Dear Cancer, I Knew I Had to Survive

by Bethany Ross June 1, 2022

Dear Cancer, 

I hate you. You took more from me than you will ever know. There I was, newly married, thirty years old, running half marathons, when you decided to invade my body and life. I had been sick for nine months, vomiting every day and seeing doctor after doctor, and no one could figure out what was wrong with me.

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