If you haven't met her, it's probably for a reason. She's always got something going; road tripping, riding motorcycles, learning drums, "fixing" her truck "Chad", wrangling two dogs, hair styling school, painting... the list of her talents goes. She uses her time vigorously living life.
To me, she can make anything happen. She never doubts a decision. Through her stories of debauchery, adventures, goals and of course her achievements, I learn she is a pure force of talent.
She doesn't owe anyone an explanation, and for the past 9 years, she has been quietly battling a rare and aggressive form of cancer. It's never been a secret. But it's never been an excuse for her to live life to any less extent.
This cancer is Paraganglioma, a rare neuroendocrine. She was most likely born with it. Her condition is even more uncommon in that it is aggressive and metastasized (Stage 4, it spreads). 5 years ago she was also diagnosed with metastses (spreading of cancer) in the spine and lymph nodes, with trace amount in the lungs.
She's never really been in remission. Without writing a novel, the public health care system in Canada leaves something to be desired. She has been waiting for an MRI scan for over two months now.
In October her blood pressure started fluctuating tremendously... in itself threatening her life. She spent two days in hospital while her team of specialists found medication to stabilize her. Through various other science-y tests, her specialists deduced that the cancer is aggressively spreading again, with two tumours in her spine and one in her hip. This is while they wait for the MRI test, which is STILL not completed and would bear the most accurate information about her cancer.
Asia and her close family and friends are preparing themselves for another long haul of hospitals, tests, treatment, perhaps more surgery, and a lot of down time. Asia has led an astoundingly normal life so far, working full time and attending school. This routine is imminently threatened again for them.
My own experience with loved ones with cancer, and the philosophy that I've come to is a simple one. Remove as much stress from that person as possible. Financial aid is the easiest and fastest way to ensure Asia lives through this experience in a stress and anxiety free environment. I encourage you to share your own stories about this ridiculously awesome human and of course give as much as you can! The goal is 15,000 but I'd like to raise a cool million to send her way of course.
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