As of May 29, 2019 it was discovered that the lymphoma has manifested itself in my left eye and my spine and I have returned to continue chemotherapy
Hey there! My name is Alberto Alfaro, I am a Houstonian, I will be 28 years young June 15, I am the second born of three boys and I am a cancer survivor.
Much like many of you I lived a normal life before my diagnosis, I worked my 9-5, and on my spare time I worked as an independent audio/visual tech for local performers and electronic music acts. September of 2018 is around the time when I noticed that there were some changes with my body that did not seem or felt normal. I was in constant back pain that seemed to have no end. At the time I was working for a small company, so I was uninsured, and I felt as if my options were limited in what kinds of doctors I could see and not to have to pay a large sum of money upfront. I mainly stuck to family practice clinics in where they only prescribed medicines and did not go deep into researching why my body pains were not healing. At one point I just couldn’t bear the pain any longer and went to an emergency room, there it was found that I had an elevated white blood cell count and liver enzymes, but they wanted to remove my gallbladder and I refused. Soon after I visited my wife’s primary care doctor and I was diagnosed with acute leukemia lymphoma. Since I was uninsured at the time the doctor recommended me to visit the Ben Taub hospital in Houston, Texas where it was confirmed on November 11th, 2018 that my diagnosis was stage 4 Lymphoma.
Of course, during all this turmoil and misery I lost my job, but it had a positive side. I was able to apply to my wife’s insurance that was provided by her job as an emergency applicant. I was approved and covered by December 1st 2018. I set up appointments with MD Anderson cancer center, sent over my medical records from Ben Taub, and even before my first appointment I got a call from my oncologist, Dr. Ranjit Nair, in where he urged me to visit the emergency room over at MD Anderson, so my treatment can start immediately, along side other procedures such as vacuuming liquid out of my lungs and blood transfusions.
Six months and six chemotherapy sessions later I walked out victorious and in full remission. I finished my chemotherapy April 10th, 2019 and throughout it all I did not suffer all too much from chemo side effects such as nausea, but I did lose my hair and I got sick from my first lumbar spine puncture. Throughout it all I never lost my positive attitude and optimism that, with the help of my loved ones, I can beat my cancer.
Never the less, my life was on pause, but the world still went on. The journey of cancer is a unique experience that some don’t get to see through, and I am lucky to be one to have survived. It would be cliché to end this on the notion that I will be living life one day at a time, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
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