My name is Ginna Barilone (Vieux) and I am a proud & blessed single mother of two beautiful children, Jade Elizabeth, 30 & Jordan, 26. In 2016 I started a small entertainment business in Maryland, Mzz B Productions, LLC. We provide live bands, photo booths, DJ/KJ and live sound production for both private and corporate clients in Maryland and the surrounding states. Before that I spent most of my career both temporary and permanent working status as an Administrative Coordinator for Johns Hopkins Institution.
I recently graduated in 2019 and 2018 with an Associates in Business Management and 2 Certifications in Entrepreneurship and Small Business from the Community College of Baltimore County. Today, I genuinely volunteer to serve as a Board of Director for the Alumni Association. My duties on the board along with my colleagues are to develop community activities that raise funds to aid students facing financial hardships. Also, we all generously volunteer time to reach out to the surrounding communities to raise awareness the benefits of becoming a member of the Alumni Association as a whole.
A person filled with many passions, I love to spend time with my immediate family and closest friends traveling, cooking, playing card games and watching movies. There is nothing more satisfying than being with family and friends. My second favorite thing is music, I love to sing and perform. When singing and performing, all the stress is relieved and my on-stage alter-ego “Mzz B” takes over. It makes me happy to see how it puts a smile on faces and uplifts spirits. Lastly, I volunteer for friends that request my help or charitable organizations. For the most part, a few musicians from my bands and I, volunteer entertainment services to perform for charitable events.
My family and I have raised funds and volunteered our time for over 15 years for many organizations, Maryland Food Bank, Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Johns Hopkins Adopt a Family for Christmas, Make a Wish Foundation, Relay for Life, Bark for Life, Save the Tas-tas, Susan Komen, Police Athletic League and Ed-Block just to name a few. There is nothing more fulfilling than to volunteer and give back to a community in need of help! I have taught and raised my children from a young age through their adult hood that if they can help someone to do so. I teach them to do it because it is the right thing to do and to not expect anything in return. I tell them, " The reward is the gift of giving and feeling great about how good you've made someone else in need feel when they least expect it!"
In between wearing all these hats, out of nowhere I started experiencing a slight stomach ache in the month of June 2020. Thinking it was a GYN issue, I made an appointment to see my doctor. Several years ago I had some fibroids removed and so I was examined for this and it was determined that it was a fibroid however, they wanted to perform other tests & MRI’s to be sure. By this time, I weighed 157 pounds. In July the pain had increased in my stomach and progressed to my lower back. I knew that it couldn't be fibroids causing this pain, so I thought maybe I pulled a back muscle. Suddenly, my symptoms got worse with intensified stomach aches, severe back aches, diarrhea, jaundice, loss of appetite and rapid weight loss. I was finally scheduled for an X-Ray and then finally a GI appointment in August.
During this visit, I was scheduled for an intense routine of blood work, infectious disease testing, prescriptions, biopsies, CT scans, and so much more all in the month of September! All of this took place before I was finally diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer in October 2020. By this time, 3 months later, I weighed 134 pounds. Today my weight is a steady 119 pounds and I currently have 2 stents placed in my pancreatic bile duct to keep the duct clear from blockage & the jaundice from recurring. I also receive chemotherapy infusions twice a month. I attend doctor visits every week either for checkups, chemo infusions or bloodwork. I’m also now going to physical therapy twice a week because the cancer has weakened my muscles and decreased the mass in my lower and upper extremities.
It is such a painful and devastating experience for anyone to have to go through. My head is still spinning with disbelief of having cancer. I went from being such an active person and being involved in the community to feeling intense pain everyday. Without the pain medication I receive, the cancer will leave me bed ridden and I REFUSE TO BE BED RIDDEN! I am not a candidate for surgery or radiation because the cancer is not only in my pancreas but has spread to my liver. The treatment I receive bi-weekly can only contain the growth of the cancer which requires multiple treatments and CT scans every other month. I've had about 4-6 CT scans already in just this year alone. But even through my daily battle, I continue to run my business, temp at Hopkins from home when I can and carry out my duties volunteering for CCBC and other non-profit organizations.
There is no cure for the type of cancer that I have but we hope that someday the tumor shrinks down to GONE! We are a hopeful and praying family that trust God heals! I am so use to being strong, motivated, independent and openly giving to others that I have a hard time accepting help. My children, family and friends are my support system and care about me deeply. They are the ones that have encouraged me to tell my story and who keeps me going because I so WANT TO LIVE!
Your kind donation would not only help with the co- pay cost of continuing treatment, but CT scans, pain treatment, counseling, blood work, PT and doctor visits as well. Your generous gift is most appreciative and I am truly thankful for you! All contributions will help tremendously not only financially but to help ease the pain of not knowing that treatment can be denied at anytime because one cannot afford to pay the co-pay.
I continue each and everyday to keep the faith for not just me but for my family because I'm my children's mom, my sisters youngest sister, and my mothers daughter. I deeply pray for a cure soon and for everyone else that is fighting this or some other incurable disease battle to survive!
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