Metastatic Cervical Cancer is cervical cancer that has returned after initial treatment, and spread beyond the cervix into adjacent organs. At such an advanced stage, it is considered incurable, and my sister-in-law Ashley has it.
The five year survival rates are extremely low, with median life spans of less than 12 months. This cancer is extremely aggressive. Chemotherapy at this stage is with palliative intention only, meaning it will only help extend her life while severely impacting her quality of life.
In order to maintain insurance coverage Ashley has continued to work, but the cost of treatment continues to add up and some of the treatments needed are not covered by her insurance. We are reaching out to you to assist us in raising urgent funds needed to cover Ashley's treatment for as long as possible.
Ashley is a 31-year-old loving wife and mother to her 10-year-old daughter and has selflessly helped care for her niece and 2 nephews over the years. Ashley has a kind and caring presence. She has an inner-strenght that has allowed her to face this devistaing diagnosis with optimism and hope.
Ashley was first diagnosed with Cervical Cancer in June 2016 following a routine check-up. She underwent 3 months of chemotherapy and radiation before receiving the good news, the cancer was gone!
While Ashley was receiving her good news, her mom (Kelly Brown) was told she has Breast Cancer and would require aggressive treatment. Ashley was ready to use her experience to help her mom through her journey. She said, " there's nothing good about having cancer, but I'm glad I am able to be there for my mom to support her and let her know what to expect so it's not so scary." This is who Ashley is, loving, caring, and thinking others.
Just a few months before Ashley's 6 month mark she was attending her daughters basketball game and began experiencing shortness of breath and pain. David took her to the emergency room where they were told they need to follow up with her oncologist ASAP due to some masses found on the CT scan.
In February, Ashley was told she has stage IVb Cervical Cancer and that there is no known cure. A second opinion confirmed the diagnosis. We stood in the bathroom at the Brigham and Women's Cancer Center and for the first time we cried together as she talked about her love for David and Riley and how she wants to protect them. Even in the shadow of being told she has an incurable cancer, she is thinking of her family.
The love she has as a wife and mother gives her the strength to fight, the ability to find hope, and the desire to live life to the fullest.
We ask you to please consider contributing to our fund raising efforts and support Ashley.
With much love and gratitude,
The Polkinghorn Family