My name is Katie. I was 2 years old when I was diagnosed so I guess this doesn’t really fit in with the whole “teen” thing.. but I’m a teen now, so I decided to put in my two cents. I don’t really remember a lot about having cancer, I mean, I was 2. Do you remember things when YOU were two? I remember bits and pieces, as would anyone. I was diagnosed with Acute Lymphatic Leukemia in January 2000, 13 years ago. I was in remission when I was 5. I’ve been cancer free for about 10 years now. My mom told me that I was on the verge on dying.. I was supposed to die the night that my pastor at the time came and he prayed for me and I don’t know what your view of religion is, but I believe that there is power in prayers because the next day, the doctor said that there was a chance of me living now and from then on, I kept getting better.. Now I am healthy and I hope to work with cancer children when I’m older. Every July there is a Relay for Life cancer walk in my town, I have gone every year since I was about 4 maybe. All I have to say for those of you fighting: Hope for tomorrow. Pray whenever you can. Love always. and Kick cancer’s ass. <3 I love you all. STAY STRONG
Hi, I’ve only just found this site as I thought it might be helpful to share stories with people who have gone through a similar situation to me.
2 years ago when I was 17, I went to the doctors with an unusual numb feeling in my right hip, he sent me for ultrasounds, CT scans, MRI scans and eventually for a flexible cystoscopy (incase anyone doesn’t know that’s basically when they put a camera up into your bladder). As soon as the cystoscopy was over I was asked to wait in the surgeons office while he went to get my parents, we all sat in the office while he told us I had a bladder tumor that could be cancerous, as soon as I heard the word ‘tumor’ I just completely zoned out.
I was put on an emergency list and I had an operation just 2 weeks later to remove the tumor, they done some tests and found out it was cancerous, so they injected a dose of chemo into my bladder.
Luckily that one dose was all I needed and I now have an operation every 6 months to check the tumor hasn’t came back, which it hasn’t done yet!
I am definitely very lucky and sometimes I don’t think I deserve the sympathy people give me, all I think is I didn’t know it was cancer until after it was gone and I only needed one dose of chemo, which didn’t give me any side effects at all since it was injected straight into my bladder.
The only thing is sometimes I feel like I don’t have anyone to talk to about it, no-one I know has gone through anything like this and according to my doctor, Im about 60 years too young to have bladder cancer, no-ones knows why I got it so young and now everytime I have my 6 monthly operation or I have the slightest pain in my bladder im terrified the tumors back. I guess that’s just something ill have to get used to.
Thanks for letting me rant, haha
Let me just say that this website is great. I don’t feel so alone now knowing other people have gone through what I’ve been through. I feel like I should share my story, because it may help someone.
I was a normal 10 year old. I was enjoying my 6th grade year and living my life to the fullest. I enjoyed many trips to Disney and was taking dance classes. Life was good. Until, April of 2010. I was diagnosed with embroynal rhabdomyosarcoma. Phew! Never thought I could say it all.
At age 10. The tumor was in my sinuses and I had surgery to test it for malignancy at the children’s hospital of Philadelphia. Our fear came true when we learned it was cancer. It felt like my heart had sunk to the floor when I found out. As a young girl, when I learned I would have to have chemo I immediately thought of my hair. Would it be gone right away? How long until it all fell out? I wasn’t thinking of the seriousness of the situation, but I guess that’s where the innocence of a child comes through. My doctors at CHOP had me start treatment immediately so we could nip this cancer in the butt. I endured many pokes and pinches, blood transfusions, and 3 surgeries through the whole process. I had a feeding tube since I wouldn’t be able to eat for 10 months. Imagine that. I didn’t put one piece of food in my mouth for 10 months. I was fed through a tube in my stomach. My throat was so damaged from the radiation I would need. I had 10 months of chemo. It was a long journey, but I came out victorious. I beat my cancer and now I’m almost 2 years out if my last treatment.
I want to let those starting out to know that you will get through this. Yes, it’s devastating. Your going to feel so many emotions. But, think of your life. You will get through this and there will be a better life after cancer. I’m living it.
It all started on October 14, 2011. We went to the dermatologist, Dr. Amy Orsini. She examined the bump and said that the bump on my skin looked red. We scheduled an appointment to take a biopsy of the bump on November 14, 2011.
Leading up to the appointment was nerve wracking. I didn’t really know what to expect or what was going to happen. I had never had anything like this before!
On the day of the biopsy, I remember being really nervous. We had to wait for about 40 minutes for the doctor. I had a test the next day, and really needed to get home to study.
At last, the doctor arrived. She apologized for being late. There was also a very nice nurse. When Dr. Orsini started, she first gave me some local anesthesia through a shot. There were three or four of them, and they hurt like hell! It was the most painful thing that I have ever experienced. After that, I didn’t feel anything. I was listening to the iPod the whole time, and the doctor and nurse were talking to me. The nurse and my mom held my hand the whole time. Before I knew it, the doctor was stitching me up. I felt a little bit of that because the medicine was wearing off, but it wasn’t too bad.
The next day, Dr. Orsini called with the result. We received some harrowing results. The bump was cancerous, and I had to get the bump removed again. I was so upset that I immediately started crying. I couldn’t believe it! The first experience was awful, and I could not imagine going through it again!
We then went to a doctor named Dr. Singh Bel. She was one of the nicest doctors I have ever met. She felt very comfortable doing the procedure. I was relieved at that point. We thought that this was for sure the doctor that we would be sticking with for the procedure.
Unfortunately, the tables turned for the worst. We got a call two days later from Dr. Singh Bel. She said that she wasn’t sure how big it was, and that I needed an MRI done of my brain to see the size of it.
The MRI was terrible. I had to lie in the machine for about two hours! The machine was as loud as a lawn mower, and I had to keep my head perfectly still. The worst part was that I had to get contrast injected in the middle of it. I was so scared that I started crying. My mom had to hold my shoulders down. The technologist could not find a vein, and so he had to stick me twice.
We got the results a few says later. Good news- the bump was smaller than she expected. However, she didn’t feel comfortable removing it, so she sent us to Northwestern.
When we got to Northwestern, everything started moving really fast. I saw two doctors on the first appointment. I was crying, and I think I had a good reason to. Initially, the plastic surgeon said that he’d need to shave half of my head for the surgery. This was just too much for me. When I heard the news, I started crying. The doctor, meanwhile, just sat there and stared at me. I was thinking, “ You are an idiot. You just met me, and then you gave me extremely horrible news that made me cry. Now, you’re just sitting there staring at me. What’s wrong with this picture?”. I was enraged, but didn’t say anything.
We then went to the main surgeon’s office. I was so upset at this point that I didn’t even care about what was going on. This was a big mistake on my part, but I didn’t know it. We met a nice nurse named Jennifer, who would later be the one who would talk to me on the phone and answer my questions. We met with a resident, and I didn’t even try to understand what was going on. Everything that happened that day was a blur.
The next time we went back to the hospital, January 23, was for the first surgery. At this point, I was so freaked out that my dad had to give me a tranquilizer called Valium. It was so scary! I had to get shots in my head to numb me up. I must have had about 20 shots (ok, maybe I’m exaggerating!), and they injected me three times to get the tissue out. I was panicking. It took about five hours before the surgery was over.
Later that day, I also went in for a pre-surgical checkup. By that time, I was so upset and worn out that I didn’t even care about what was going on. The checkup, to be honest, sucked! The nurse said, “Why is there blood on your shirt?”. What a bogus question! “ I had surgery this morning”, I retorted. When she left, she asked my parents, “ What ya got goin’ on there?”. What a bitch! * smirks*
Waiting was the hardest part. It was so hard to go to school and pretend everything was normal when it wasn’t. I have to admit that my grades went down, but who could blame me. I had to tell my teachers about what was going on, and that was extremely awkward. They were like, “ Is everything ok?”. What was I supposed to say to that, “yes”?
On February 7, Jennifer called to see how I was doing. She warned me about getting my head shaved: “ Be prepared to see yourself when you wake up”. That scared the crap out of me!!
The morning of February 8, we had to get to the hospital at 6:00 in the morning. My surgery was scheduled to start at 7:30 a.m. There was so much to do: register, get my hospital bracelet, and go to my room. I was really scared. They gave me a horrible green hospital gown to change into. I was sweating uncontrollably here! I had absolutely no idea whatsoever what to expect.
We waited for what seemed like forever. I just lied on the bed staring at the clock. Eventually, all these people started coming into my room. It was so damn scary! I was staring up at this weird looking bag hanging on the ceiling with plastic tubes coming out of it. I put two and two together and realized that it was an I.V. Oh well, I guess that’s inevitable. I thought to myself.
Before I knew it, it was time to get the I.V. Unfortunately, I am a needle phobic. In fact, I almost fainted at a blood test once! The nurse had to give me a shot to numb me before, and that hurt like hell, and it didn’t even help! I still felt the I.V needle going into my hand.
The plans changed a bit at this point. Originally, I was going to have half my head shaved, but they decided not to do hat, but instead to do a skin graft. I was a bit concerned, but at least I’d have hair in the end!
Eventually, the time had come for me to be wheeled down to the OR. I was so drugged up that I didn’t really pay attention to that. I started freaking out when I got to the OR. There were so many people hanging around in there! The room was really big with bright lights. I tried to calm myself down by chatting with the nurses, most of whom were men.
Then a squishy teal ( I don’t know whether it was blue or green) mask was put over my face, and I fell asleep. The mask was unexpected. It freaked me out, but I didn’t really have time to think about it. I don’t really remember much after that…
The next thing I knew, I woke up in the recovery room. I was intubated during the surgery, so my throat was a bit sore. Surprisingly enough, I wasn’t nauseous at all when I woke up! After a few minutes, I was wheeled to another room to see my parents. I had a popsicle and some ginger ale. After that, my parents left to go get me some food from Corner Bakery. I had not eaten all day!
After about an hour or so, the nurse, who’s name was Teri, had me get up and try to walk around. I was a bit dizzy, but I was fine. It was time to go home after that. I missed about 5 days of school, and I wasn’t allowed to wash my hair for five days. It was disgusting! I wash my hair every day, so I was glad when I finally could again! By the fifth day after the surgery, my hair was an absolute mess. I couldn’t go to school because of that, but luckily I could wash my body- thank god! I hate going a day without a shower!
It was really great to go back to school the Tuesday after surgery, which just so happened to be Valentine’s Day! A lot of people asked where I was, but they weren’t rude about it. There’s a difference between rudeness and curiosity! I had to wear an adorable black hat with a grey flower that my dad’s friend made me, but nobody noticed. At New Trier, many kids wear hats!
Unfortunately, due to the surgery, my grades started to slip. I didn’t fail any classes, but they went down by a letter grade at most. But that wasn’t the most of my problems! That didn’t stop me!
We went back to the surgeon, and he said that I’d have to have another surgery to take off another bump, luckily not cancerous. It was so scary to think about, but it really wasn’t that bad. I was sedated, so there was no general anesthesia involved- YAY!
when i was younger i cant remember how old i was diagnosed with a wilms tumor. I went through all the treatment and everything. But here is the miracle i went under an other ultrasound before surgery and i found out it was gone! i didn’t need the surgery i am now almost 15 in a couple years so it Ive been cancer free for about 12 years im guessing. im a fighter
if you have cancer you must watch this
Hi my name is Abigail and im 16. I just found out about this website and think it is wonderful! I was diagnosed with a brain tumor in my brain stem when i was about 2. I underwent biopsies and all kinds of surgery. The doctor managed to get about half out but has since grown a bit more. Now i have weakness on my left side and cant eat on my own so i have a j tube and a trach. I cant speak so i use sign laanguage to communicate. This does make me frusterated because i go to public school and must have an interpreter and a nurse follow me around school. Its a major social turn off but i have a couple of close friends who care enough to ignore them and learn sign language. I am looking forward to college and what the world has to offer. I am a strong person and for you guys going through cancer and the treatments you have to stay strong and positive.
Hey my name is Mark i’m 22 years old I was diagonosed with a Brain Tumor when I about 4. I had two biopsys with which lead to my who right side going week. THen I was all good untill I was about 12 and the tumor started growing back and had to go radiation twice and kemo once not fun. I’ve had an MRI every 6 months since I was 4. I’ve been through hell growing up with all my medical issues, but that never ever stoped me from doing what I wanted to do in life. I manage one of Rochester top car dealerships online inventory and for damn sure one of their hardest workers. I can drive stick shift like a speed demon out of hell, tie my shoes 1 handed. I know how to fix most things on cars I know how to do body work and paint cars. I’ve been skiing since the age of 3. I can rip it on a snowmobile or a four wheeler. What I have been through growing up was a drag and i’m sure anyone with cancer can relate but it made me who I am today and I’m not going to let America #1 killer stop me from what I do in life. For all the surviors out their and people going through treatment now I feel for you but don’t let this nasty disease let you down. Look up at life and live life to its fullest and dont let anything stop you from what you want to do. If you would like to ask me any questions or talk I would be glad to here is my facebook page http://www.facebook.com/#!/beanzzy
Hi everyone, I’m Christina and I am 18 and I was diagnosed with synovial sarcoma in my right thigh, in June 2011. Two years before June 2011 I went to the doctors and they diagnosed my “lump” in my leg as something else, they told me not to worry about it. So therefore I did not. Then in April 2011 my thigh started hurting again and the lump seemed to be come larger then before. I begged my mom and dad to take me to the doctors again to figure out what was wrong with my thigh. As parents they did not want to believe that there could in fact be something wrong with me. They kept on pushing it off the doctors appointment that is. Once my mom did call the doctors office did not want to see me because my case was “closed” as they put it. In May I finally saw doctor lets call him “Dr.N”, he ordered a contrast MRI of the site and told us that we would go from there. I personally had a phobia of needles and blood but all of that changed while going through my cancer treatments. Once my MRI came back Dr.N told us to go to an oncologist. Luckily my dad works for Jefferson University Hospital, we went to we will call him “Dr.A”. He told my mom, dad, and myself that I would need a biopsy of my right thigh at the site. At this point I was terrified. I could not believe that there was a chance I could have cancer. I had my biopsy done a week after, two days before my 18th birthday. As a graduation present my parents sent me and my 21 year old brother to Disney World. While there I tried to take the thought out of my head that I actually could have cancer I just could not grasp the situation. After I got back from Disney I saw Dr.A and I remember sitting in the exam room with my parents telling them I had a horrible feeling in my stomach. Somehow in my gut I knew I had cancer. The doctor came in looking very serious and sad. He finally said the words you have synovial sarcoma. At that very moment my life changed forever, I just remember crying and crying. I could not contain myself the feelings I had coming from my brain and body were unreal to me. My mom looked at me and told me “it would be alright” and I replied “you dont know that”. The doctor then went through what my treatment process would be. I would have four sessions of chemo each session a week long, along with chemo six weeks of radiation, then finally surgery. To be honest I do not remember the fine details of the appointment. All I do remember is walking out into the street and seeing the world in a different view, things were running through my head “would i die?” “how am I going to handle loosing my hair” “will my friends support me” “What about college” etc. I can answer all the questions above. I did survive cancer, I lost all my hair and have a beautiful human hair wig, I lost many friends but learned who my true ones were, and I am starting college January 2012. I started chemo on June 20th the Monday right after my high school graduation while my friends were at senior week drinking away and having an amazing time. I had a double port placed in my chest the first day of chemo. Lets just say my needle phobia is no longer around. I was very lucky with my chemo I did not get sick, nor did I loose weight. The only thing which did happen was I lost my hair. Loosing my hair was the most terrible thing which could have happened to me. But now i realize that it is growing back and it will be long again in no time. My friend which I lost were scared to see a person go through one of the most scariest things a person can go through. My last chemo was in August 2011 while my friends were going to college. The last chemo was the worst, since I should have been going off to college. To those who are scared about going through Chemo, I am not going to sugar coat it, it is a very scary thing to go through but having a good attitude while having treatments helps the process 150%. I realized while going through chemo that I could not cry anymore because crying could not change the fact that I had cancer. Yes, I did let out cries sometimes, because crying is a good therapeutic technique. Once my friends left for college i became overly depressed, I started seeing a therapist who is wonderful and helped me deal with everything which I went through. I started radiation in mid September 2011. Radiation was actually very fun. The techs which were at the center were always fun and friendly and made me feel comfortable. The only effects I had from radiation were redness at the site and it made me tired. After radiation was surgery the last step to my treatment. Again my parents sent me and my brother to Disney World. There at Disney it was nice to feel normal, and realize life was getting back to normal. However, there at disney i ruined my wig because of the water and humidity! I was in a state of panic. So there at disney I went wig-less for a couple of days, and honestly I felt free. While going through all of the treatment I took online classes for college being an education major I would not let myself fall behind. It was another stress which I put on myself and wish I did not. However it gave me something to do. Finally on November 28th 2011, I had my surgery the removal of my tumor. They removed a grapefruit size amount of mass. I have 14 stitches in my thigh and I am now doing Physical Therapy. I know it can be scary going through cancer and not knowing what could happen. But my advice as a survivor now is to have a good attitude and take each day as a brand new start. Also, always tell yourself that you can do it! and you can kick cancer in the butt!!!!! because we are young and we have a life to live.
It’s been over 6 months since I found out I had a malignant tumor. On March 24th, I visited an Urologist and he didn’t save me from hearing one of the most shocking news of my life. After my Ultra Sound exam, I heard something along the lines: “Yes, it is cancer. Yes, it can be malignant. Your testicle needs to be amputated. You will need further treatment, either chemotherapy or radiation. But it doesn’t mean you won’t be a real man just with one ball…” OK. hold up. I was in shock. After I heard words like cancer, amputation, chemo, I couldn’t hold myself up from letting a tear fall. Is this really happening to me? I went outside crying. Smoked like 3 cigarettes in a row. And from that day, I knew my life would never be the same… To make the long story short, I ended up with 3 rounds of BEP chemotherapy treatment (Bleomycin, Etoposide, Cisplatin IV drug cocktail). I was very depressed during the whole process, but I had my family and friends by my side. I am very grateful for that. On July 28th, I had my latest CT scan to find out my Lymph Nodes are back to normal and am in “clear.” Never would I have thought I would beat cancer while still being a teenager. One of my goals before turning 20 was to finish a novel. I finished cancer. And maybe one day I’ll write a book about it.