Happy Valentine’s Day, you have leukemia. I have always been a strong, independent, athletic woman and on February 14, 2014, at 32 years old and in the midst of my career, my new marriage and looking forward to all that life had ready for me. I just didn’t expect life to throw cancer at me.
After diagnosis, after 30 plus days in the hospital, years of chemo, a stroke, seizures, another 60 days in the hospitals, experimental drugs, stem cell transplant, another 30 days in the hospital, and a team of doctors and nurses dedicated to keeping me alive, I came out the other side. A recipe of family, humor, dedication, focus, with a dash of modern-day science, and here I am, different, changed, but better.
Cancer has pushed me and made me evaluate everything that is important to me and I decided to be more patient, more understanding, more optimistic, more dedicated, more focused. Take time for the things that are important to me and shed the things that no longer serve me. I am the same at more my core, but cancer has given me the optics to find purpose and get to what’s important. I still love, food, wine, family, and fitness, I just do those things with purpose and appreciation. Having battled through cancer showed me that I am so much stronger than I ever thought I could be.
I also have chemobrain so take everything I say with a grain of salt…
GRYT is learning how to use the entire left side of my body while still undergoing chemotherapy treatment.
GRYT is hearing the words you have cancer three different times but knowing that you have the perseverance to keep going knowing you can get through it thriving.
GRYT is walking a 5k with your entire family months after recovering from a stroke while still undergoing treatment.
Editor’s note as of March 2021:
Casey Kang Head, cancer survivorship coach. Through my 13-week survivorship program, A Happier Healthier You, I help empower women to take back control of their new normal without fear so they are physically mentally, and emotionally stronger. I am a certified PT, Yoga Instructor, Cancer Exercise Specialist, Yoga Cancer specialist, trauma specialist, and PN Level 1 Nutritionist. Dog Mom to Lily. You can connect to her on Instagram @thehappierhustle or on her Facebook group, Thriving After Cancer Treatment.