Back in January of 2014 I noticed a lump on the right front side of my neck. I went to my family doctor and informed her of the find. She first thought it to be a thyroid issue as I had been dealing with hypothyroidism since 2008. I had no reason to believe otherwise and I did not know that the only way to tell if it was or wasn’t cancerous was to do a biopsy. After a few months had passed I started to realize that the lump in my neck was growing. After a lengthy wait to see different specialists I eventually had to go into emergency as the tumour was beginning to press on my airway and restrict my breathing.
It was there that I was diagnosed with marginal zone B lymphoma stage 2BE. B meaning one half of the body and E with another organ – thyroid. I started chemo the following day, I had absolutely no idea what chemo even was or that it was done through IV. After completing each of six rounds of chemo I noticed my neck starting to swell again. I made an appointment with the oncologist and that’s when I was informed that there was new growth on the left side of my neck. It was decided that I should do radiation. I didn’t know what other options were available. I was given eighteen rounds of radiation to attempt to shrink the tumours enough to qualify for a stem cell transplant since the chemotherapy wasn’t effective. In order to qualify the tumours would have needed to shrink by 50% in size and remain that way for a minimum of eight weeks. My cancer was so aggressive that the tumours kept growing back within 2-3 weeks so I wasn’t able to attempt the transplant. The doctors suggested possible test trial chemotherapy which I initially agreed to but eventually had to decline as I was so weak already.
My family came across the Immunity Therapy Centre in Tijuana, Mexico. After exhausting our efforts in Saskatchewan I decided to try the all-natural, non-invasive treatments that were available. My whole family, friends and acquaintances scraped together every penny they could to send me there. While in Tijuana I received the news that I qualified for help from the Shine on Foundation to help pay for the treatments. I was able to stay for a full 7 weeks. Without this help I wouldn’t have been able to have the love and support of my parents and husband there with me. The shine on Foundation was there to give hope to me, my husband and our four kids. Something that we were losing here with traditional treatments. Thanks to Blair and the Shine on Foundation.