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Ashlyn's Care Fund

$55,287 of $65,000 goal

Raised by 447 people in 22 months
Created August 29, 2017
Help Ashlyn Kick Cancer's Ass!!!

Friends and Family,
As you all may know, our girl was diagnosed with Acutre Myeloid Leukemia on August 22nd. She has completed her first round round of chemotherapy and has three more to go through year end. Each  round consists of 23hrs/day and 7 straight days. It's wearing to say the least and the typical effects of chemo will take a toll on Ashlyn. 
So many of you have reached out on how to help. Words can't express how supported that makes us feel and we appreciate your efforts. Since flowers nor her favorite snacks are acceptable at the moment (strict diet), we have decided to create this account to help get her what she needs to stay comfortable and heal during this time. 
We plan to use these funds in a variety of ways and will keep you posted on your support. 
As you all know Ashlyn loves her job as a Real Estate Agent but she will not be able to do too much over the next few months. Her company and boss are being amazingly supportive but she is still on 100% commission which obviously is going to become a huge burden over time. We aim to use money raised to help through these times until she is back up to full strength. These are just a few of the essential items we plan on purchasing with your support....

- A functioning laptop (Ashlyn's laptop is ancient...aka harldy works and the weight of a toddler). With hours in bed, she is in need of a good screen to watch movies and stay entertained.
- Air purifier for the bedroom at apartment. Hopefully she will be able to leave the hospital in 3-4 weeks.
-Fresh Fruit and Veggies. Doha is extremely proud of their fruit and price it accordingingly. Fruits and veggies are highly encouraged to maintain a healthy diet to fight cancer
-Clothes. Nothing says Wedding Diet like Cancer   :-/  .... Our girl will be dropping lbs and will need clothes that fit her
-IF Ashlyn looses her hair, we will need to help purchase wigs, hats, etc. 

We very much appreciate your thoughts, prayers and concerns. Ashlyn loves hearing from you all and is constantly thankful for each and everyone during this time. If you feel inclined to help, please donate to this Fund to help her Kick Cancer's Ass! 
$5, $10, $20, etc. Whatever you are comfortable with, every penny is much appreciated. 

We will keep you posted on our purchases for her and will post pics of her enjoying your gifts. 

Again, thank you all for your love and support!
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Today, August 22nd 2018, marks one year since I was diagnosed with Acute Myloid Leukemia (AML). I have so many emotions about this... happiness, sadness, fear, elation, gratefulness, anxiousness...the list could go on and on!

I thought this would be the longest year of my life and instead I sit here thinking “how has it been a year already?”. It certainly has been a year that changed my outlook on life and the ride has been extremely scary but it has also had such a positive impact that I really wasn’t expecting.

A year on I just wanted to give everyone an update on how I am getting along. The simple answer is, “I’m doing great!”. However, I still have good days and bad days. I’m still prescribed a lot medication and I’m still very much at risk to many things due to my low immune system. As my doctors told me from the very beginning, this is going to be a long road and there will be many highs and lows. As it stands everything seems to be going according to plan, however, there is always that fear inside me that thinks “What if it comes back when I get taken off my meds?!”. I know I have to stay positive as that is how we have all managed to get through this without going crazy with worry. My doctors are all thrilled with my progress and that’s what I need to believe in.

In July I had planned to visit Qatar for 3 weeks as otherwise it looked like Carl and I would be apart for 5 months! Not the best start to married life! However, my amazing doctor in the US said I was fit enough to stay in Qatar and try to get back to my normal life. He still wants me to return to the US every 6 months to be checked by his team and to have another bone marrow biopsy in December.

Thanks to the kindness of my wonderful boss here, I have been able to return to work with the same company, leasing and selling villas and apartments all over Doha. The heat and humidity has been a challenge but I rest when I need to rest and just being back at work has made me feel human again! It turns out having short hair in this climate is actually a blessing!!

I really want to thank everyone again for your continued support and love you have shown my family and I. This journey would have been a whole lot worse without all of you! Earlier this year my brother was part of a campaign that raised over $600,000 for research for The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. I knew what an amazing cause this is and have been a supporter of this event for a few years now but I don’t think I really realized how amazing this organization was until it hit me smack in the face! New research over the past several years is the reason I am still here today! It has made me want to give back to this community who has given me so much!

I am eternally thankful for the donations and amount raised on my https://www.gofundme.com/ashlynmears page Your generosity has continued to amaze me. We had no clue how this was going to affect us financially and it has blown our minds the impact it has had. Obviously me not working for a year has been a huge burden and the majority of the $54,000 has gone towards medical bills and living expenses. So far, this year and this disease has cost just over $800,000. Due to my insurance we will have to cover approx. $100,000 of this amount, so your donations have been a huge help.

Myself, Carl and my family are still finding our feet again but everything is looking positive and we all look forward to making the next year an amazing one. Maybe just with a little less drama!!
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Hi Everyone!

I know it’s been a while so I just wanted to update you all on how I am progressing as well as letting you know how all of your generous donations have helped make this journey so much better than I ever imagined! Myself, Carl and my family can't thank you all enough for the donations as they have helped tremendously while we have been going through this very hard time. I am still in shock with the diagnosis but also the medical costs and everything that has come along with this crazy experience!!

First things first, and very simply… I am doing great!! It has been a very hard and long road and I have a still have a long way to go, but, I am feeling stronger everyday and I am able to go out and do more and more things as the days go by.

I had one blip where I had to revisit the hospital for 4 days due to high fevers caused by the central line I had implanted for infusions etc. They removed this and I now have to get pricked each time they take blood or infuse me with fluids but other than that I have had very few complications after the transplant and since being discharged. I am currently living in a rented apartment near Emory campus. My doctors insisted that I live no further than 20mins from the hospital for the first 3 months in case of an emergency.

I was very apprehensive about spending weeks in the hospital post transplant but the staff and care at Emory were simply amazing – I cannot thank them enough for how I was looked after. I had constant family and friends around me and we even managed to decorate my room in the festive spirit so that being there during this period didn’t seem so bad!! Carl and I even watched the New Years fireworks from my hospital floor!

I am so grateful that my family and Carl and his Mom have been able to be by my side through this process and I can't thank my friends enough for visiting and helping keep us all sane whilst being confined to four walls!

I am very happy to have been discharged from the hospital even though I am not allowed to leave our rented apartment very often. Things will get better but the fewer people I am in contact with in these early days, the better! I have the immune system of a new born baby so even though I grow stronger everyday I am still at high risk of infections so I have to be extremely careful. I am becoming very accustomed to wearing a mask and sanitizing my hands at every opportunity!
My hair has completely fallen out so I am currently rocking the bald look but I am lucky so far that my eye lashes and brows have not disappeared even though they are massively thinning! I have been told my hair will start growing back slowly over the next few months! Fingers crossed!!

We’ve generally been keeping ourselves busy with Netflix (it’s amazing how many episodes of Friends I hadn’t seen and also how good it still is!!), board games, painting, cooking, and light workouts. We even managed to have our own Super Bowl party with enough food for 20 that included having to teach 2 English people the rules of Super Bowl Sunday eg: Shut up during the most important part…the half time show!!!

I am now 49 days post transplant and my blood work shows I am now 100% my Dad's DNA and I’m showing no more signs of AML!!!!! (before anyone asks, no this does not mean I will start acting like a man and growing a beard!! haha).

I currently have to visit the hospital twice a week and have my blood checked as well as meet with my amazing team of doctors who are keeping a close eye on all my levels and constantly changing the amount of pills I have to take each day. I am currently taking approximately 35 pills a day but this will reduce over time as my body gets stronger and can start functioning normally. My next landmark is 100 days post transplant at which point I will have another bone marrow biopsy. (Urgh! These hurt like hell but give us the best results of my progress!)
This will be towards the and of March at which time I should be able to move back to my Mom's house in Eatonton which is about an hour and a half outside of Atlanta. I will then have to visit my doctors in Atlanta at least once a week for blood work and general check ups to make sure I am showing no signs of graft versus host disease. Although my body and new stem cells have amazingly fought off the cancer I am still prone to infections and all kinds of things but the close monitoring and many tablets are hopefully keeping this all at bay!

Once again. I just want to thank you for all the prayers and support...don't stop I will still need them! But for now no AML and I couldn't be happier!!!!

We are so grateful for all the money donated and just wanted you to know exactly what this has contributed too. Originally we started the fund to cover my loss of earnings and the immediate costs we presumed but as you will see most of this has been used for medical bills and costs we didn’t even foresee. Without your amazing donations I’m sure I would not be feeling as confident about kicking cancers ass as I do right now. Thank you all.

- Flights for Carl and Ashlyn from Doha – approx. $2400
- Fuel costs for hospital visits to and from Atlanta / Lake Oconee - approx. $1000
- Hotel costs pre-transplant – approx. $3000
- Car hire whilst in Atlanta – approx. $1200
- Pharmacy costs – currently approx. $2000 (ongoing)
- Temporary apartment rental (close to hospital) - $9000
- General Food and beverage for rented apartment - $800
- Cost of hospital stay in Qatar $1200
- New Laptop- $500
- Insurance and Medical cost for 2017- $7000
- Ongoing Bills etc for apartment in Qatar- $5000 ($1000 per month)
- New clothes due to weight loss - $1500

Total spent (not including the pending insurance bills) - $34600 (of the 47,732 that has been donated).

- Medical bills not yet settled by Insurance $237,000

I feel very lucky to have been able to return to the US and receive amazing care at Emory Hospital. I am glad that I have been able to arrange decent Insurance as of January 2018 but there are still so many costs we will have to cover. It is estimated that the total cost of the whole process will be close to $800,000.
In the coming months we will be hosting some fundraisers to cover some of these costs but also to raise money for such worthy causes that I never thought would affect me so closely! We will update you on these events and I hope we can make a difference together. The generosity I have experienced in the last 7 months has been astounding and I hope you understand my appreciation and I hope that when I am fully back on my feet I can repay your kindness.

Hopefully see y’all soon!!! Xx
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BIG NEWS!! We have a donor...and I am so lucky to say it's my sweet Daddy!!!!
I have known for a few weeks now and I was just waiting on a few extra tests so that I could say for sure everything was moving forward...and it is! GOD IS SO GOOD!

I will be admitted into the hospital on December 15th and I will have 3 days of high intensity chemo and 4 days of radiation. Then on December 22nd the transplant will take place. Merry Christmas to me :-)

They have decided to do a Stem Cell Transplant versus a Bone Marrow because of my dad's age. It will really make no difference to me, but will be less invasive for my dad.

I will be admitted into the hospital for 1 month and then the 2 months after I can not be more than 40 minutes away from the hospital. We will be renting an apartment/house for 3 months so we can be close to the hospital. We are still looking for a place but hoping to secure something soon. Let's just say it is not cheap to rent anything in this area...and that's what this go fund me is meant to help with so thank you all for donating!!!!

I can't thank everyone enough for the continued prayers and support! Please don't stop...these next 3 months will be tough and I will need lots of prayers to get though it.

Love you all,
Ashlyn xx
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Good morning! Not too much to update, but thought I would let ya'll know what's been going on.

I finished my 3rd round of chemo on Thursday, Nov 9th. Everything went fine and I handled it all really well!

Dr. Blum came to see me and said he was hoping/wanting that to be my last round of chemo before the transplant (hooray)! He is hoping we find a match and we can do the transplant before Christmas. The next step is they are still looking for a donor and they made the decision to test my Dad last week as well. We have not received his results back yet so we shall wait and see. Fingers crossed! In the meantime they are still looking on the registry.

I know many people have asked about becoming a donor for me and the reality is you must register on www.bethematch.org and be prepared to be a donor for anyone!

For my Qatar friends... After looking on the website Qatar is not on the list so if you wanted to become a donor you would have to have the cheek swab sent to an address in the UK or US.

Again,
Thank you all so much for the love, support, and prayers!

xoxo,
Ash
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$55,287 of $65,000 goal

Raised by 447 people in 22 months
Created August 29, 2017
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