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    User: GregP_WN

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    Decision Point (Get on livin', get on dying..): When I thought I had lost everything, my grandmother told me something pretty important. "You choose how much this interferes with your life, it doesn't get to choose for you." That was what I needed to hear. That I'm stronger than this and all of it's crappy side effects. That's when I moved back to college, went back to school, and reclaimed my life during cancer.

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    Oh No (Diagnosed): I was interning in New York City with the United Nations. I was 21 years old and had an amazing apartment in midtown Manhattan. Life was perfect. Till one day, after a lively day of shopping with friends, I noticed a large lump on my neck. The next day I spent all afternoon trying to find a doctor. Do you know how hard it is to find a doctor in NYC on Yom Kippur. I called a lot. Finally, someone agreed to see me. Twenty minutes later he's telling me I have cancer. I didn't belive him. He was so cocky and smug, I already didn't like him so I wouldn't have trusted him anyway. He asked me to get a CT scan, just to be sure. I got a second opinion who told me it was mono. Now that, I'd rather belive. But, I go the CT scan anyway. A week later I went back to that cocky doctor's office. He was right. Not only was there a tumor on my neck, but a very large one in my chest and more across my shoulder. XXX. My world came tumbling down. My parents called from the airport, they were going to meet me in NYC. I told them not to come. I was an adult and I needed to handle my affiars and I'd see them in a few days. I had to walk into my boss's office and tell him I was sick, and I was leaving. I had to tell my landlord (who didn't really care because I still had to pay rent). I flew home. I had just lost the most amazing opportunity I'd ever have. And that, wasn't cool.

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    Side Effects (Hair loss (alopecia)): At first, I was depressed. I cried constantly, couldn't sleep, lost my hair. I was miserable. But that decision point comes, feel sorry for yourself or get over it. I got over it. I remember going wig shopping with my mom. It was hillarious. We had soo much fun. But in the end, I was bald, I just was. That's who I was. And a wig wasn't going to change that, so I decided to be me. And invest in a bunch of cool hats. :)

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    Drug or Chemo Therapy (Chemotherapy): Living with cancer while a being a college student sucked. There's no other way to say that. But, luckily for me, I had some great friends and people who tried to understand. I tried to keep my life as normal as possible, well as normal as a bald college student can. I went to class, hung out with friends, and drove home on weekends for treatment. I was determined not to let it ruin my college experience or my growth as a person. And it didn't! I did all the typical college stuff. Class, spring break, sorority life, IM sports, dating. I had my last day of chemo three days after I graduated. I had to ask my doc if we could push it off so I could attend graduation, and he said that was a good excuse. In the end, I'd say I had it pretty easy. And, I'm pretty proud of my bald head cap and gown pic with my degree in hand.