…100 Days Until Race Day
Today is for Devin.
Devin just celebrated her 24th birthday last week. Happy belated birthday, kid.
Devin is a 2-time cancer conqueror. She was 3-years-old when she was forced to battle Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) the first time. After 2.5 years of treatment, she was declared cancer free.
Devin was nearly 12 years cancer free when she was diagnosed with ALL again at age 17.
She endured another 2.5 years of treatment, meaning that when Devin turned 20, she had received chemo for 1/4 of her life.
“As long as I can remember, I’ve been “the cancer girl” to everyone in my life. I grew up in and out of hospitals and doctors’ offices, I’ve experienced more sacrifice and loss than most, and I’m still baffled when I hear someone tell me they’ve never even had the flu. As I grow older, being “the cancer girl” is less a label that I’m forced to wear, and more an identity that I’m happy to take on.
Chemo was by no means a walk in the park, and I still have my days where I feel like I have the body of a 60-year-old, but I think my being sick turned out to be the biggest blessing of my life. Because of what I’ve been through, I’ve learned more in my short 24 years than some do in their whole lifetime.
I’ve learned about perseverance, choosing your battles and the importance of being thankful each day; I’ve learned that I never have a say in what life throws at me, but I have full control over how I handle it; I’ve learned that no matter what troubles come my way, there is always someone going through something worse.
I live my life as if tomorrow isn’t promised, something that becomes more than a bumper sticker saying when you’ve been a kid with cancer. I know how lucky I am to be alive and I hope to continue devoting my life to raising awareness for so many of my friends who aren’t.” – Devin
On August 13, 2012, just 4 days before moving to Austin to attend The University of Texas at Austin, Devin “successfully finished a more aggressive 2.5 year treatment plan full of over 30 inpatient hospital stays, 57 rounds and almost 200 actual doses of chemotherapy drugs, five ICU visits, hundreds of outpatient visits, and dozens of unplanned emergency room stays”.
As if beating cancer TWICE isn’t a good enough story, Devin‘s story gets even better.
“I’m now a healthy, happy long-term survivor. I graduated from the The University of Texas at Austin with a degree in Public Relations and I’m currently working MY DREAM JOB with the number one PR firm in the world. I’m also “Aunt Dee” to the cutest nephew in the world and I feel blessed every day to be around to watch him grow up.”
If I may editorialize, Devin, WE are blessed to see YOU grow up and live your dream.
Today was for you, “Aunt Dee”
Who will you meet tomorrow?