I was born and raised in New Brighton, PA. After high school, I attended nursing school. On March 10th, 2015 my life as I knew it was turned upside-down. I received a phone call and learned that something minor was, in fact, metastatic thyroid cancer. In that moment, I was petrified, but was determined to do anything and everything necessary to reach remission for the sake of my children. I had to quit nursing school to start treatments immediately. Surgery and one round of radiation were supposed to take care of the cancer completely.
Unfortunately, life does not always go as we hope. After more surgery and another round of radiation, we were once again hopeful. A scan in November 2017 revealed that the disease metastasized into my lung, liver, kidney, small intestine, and the remaining lymph nodes of my neck region. For two months, I internalized this devastating news to protect my family during the holidays.
In January 2018, the realization that I was severely ill had set in when I found out I was in congestive heart failure due to the pressure of the tumor from my lung pushing on my heart. At that moment, I had to speak with my family about my circumstances and what could occur in the future. I have two young children whose future I had to protect.
I have had multiple setbacks, including, temporary loss of medical insurance, which was reinstated several months later. I am currently undergoing radiation at Hillman Cancer Center and will continue to battle this disease, so that I can watch my children grow up to be the outstanding young man and woman I know they are going to become. Thank you for giving me this time to tell you a little bit about myself. I am grateful for everyone who listens.