A typical 10-year-old’s life is filled with school, hobbies, and spending time with friends. However, my childhood took an unexpected turn when I was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia at the age of 10. Suddenly, the carefree days of youth were replaced by three and a half years of grueling treatment.
After a hard-fought battle, I emerged victorious, enjoying two years of remission and the return to a normal teenage life. But fate had another twist in store. At 16, leukemia reared its head once more, and I found myself facing the fight of my life all over again.
Following my initial round of chemotherapy, a bone marrow biopsy revealed that my body had developed a resistance to the treatment. My doctors recommended a bone marrow transplant, and after enduring a week of high-dose chemotherapy and thrice-daily radiation sessions, I received a life-saving transplant.
Today, I’m proud to say that I’ve been in remission for over five years! While my journey through cancer stole many of the typical childhood experiences – attending school, playing sports, and simply hanging out with friends – it also ignited a passion within me to help others facing similar battles.
Driven by my personal experience, I founded the Bags of Love Foundation to offer support and hope to children, teens, and young adults battling cancer. Our nonprofit provides care packages, scholarships, and financial assistance to those in need, and so far, we’ve raised over $150,000 to help make their lives a little brighter.
Through my story, I hope to inspire others facing childhood cancer, letting them know that they’re not alone, and that even in the darkest times, there’s always hope. The Bags of Love Foundation is a testament to the power of resilience and the incredible impact we can have when we turn our challenges into opportunities to help others.