Kimberly’s Story: June 20, 2016. This was the day that I first heard the word Sarcoma. It was 3 am, and I woke up to get a glass of water and saw an email on my phone from Quest – the results of my biopsy. I opened it, thinking it was no big deal. According to my doctor, the bump on my knee was nothing. It would be best to look at the results and go back to bed and have a good nights sleep. Instead I saw the words Pleomorphic Rhabdomyosarcoma, High grade, Stage 3. A quick google search told me that this was definitely a big deal. This was cancer. My PET scan on June 24 showed that the cancer was localized to my knee – good news! I started my first chemo treatment at Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, FL, in the beginning of July. I had two intense chemo treatments and then surgery in August. The chemo had all but destroyed the tumor before they removed the rest. So much good news! I followed up surgery with two more rounds of chemo, and now I am in the middle of seven weeks of radiation to kill any cells that may be lingering. It has been an exhausting and trying six months, but I have fought the fight the best that I can and I am now NED! Everything I have done these last 6 months has been for my two young children and my husband. Sarcoma is a beast, but it can be beat!
Words of Wisdom: I have tried my best, throughout everything, to stay positive. I know that seems so cliche, but it is true. Every time I got down and thought “woe is me, I have cancer” (and believe me, those days definitely existed), I had nothing else to do but pick myself up and fight this fight with all my might. My faith has been a huge part of my fight – I’ve had my prayer warriors on my side and I give a lot of credit to God, the Ultimate Healer. I’ve done what I can do to stay healthy, too. I’ve taken up swimming for exercise. I juice regularly to get lots of nutrients. I have a FitBit and I try to get as many steps as I can each day. I am praying that I will live a very long, cancer free life!
Role of the Sarcoma Foundation of America: I have appreciated having the Sarcoma Foundation of America to follow on Facebook. I know how rare this cancer is and it is encouraging that the foundation is fighting to find a cure. I hope to work with the foundation in the future to start a local chapter – I’d like to organize a run or a walk to raise funds.