Rosa's Breast Cancer Recovery Fund

My mother, Rosa, is an active 48 year old Filipino-American woman who, despite all the odds, has managed to singelhandedly raise three loving sons.

This past Christmas; however, my mother noticed an unusual lump on her left breast she had never felt before. Despite what you might think, she thought nothing of it. You see, my mom has NF, or neurofibromatosis, a condition that causes tumors to form in her brain, spinal cord, and nervous system. Thankfully, her type of NF is relatively benign. Nevertheless, it does affect her nerves, causing her to develop noticeable bumps throughout her body called fibromas.

Because of the nature of these fibromas' proximity to mom's main nerves, she's never been eligible for having them removed. She has lived with them for most her life, and it was because of this that she thought the lump on her breast was nothing to worry about. Soon enough, friends and coworkers eagerly pushed her to get a mammogram to rule out any doubts. You know, just in case. One day when she had just about had enough, she drove herself down to the doctor and requested a biopsy performed, never once giving it a second thought.

 On January 31st,  her tests came back positive for high-grade mammary carcinoma consistent with metaplastic carcinoma with mixed ductal and squamous components. She had been diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer in her left breast, and it was from that point foward that her life has changed forever. 

She is scheduled for chemotherapy on March 6th to try and shrink the cancer in her breast. As we understand it, she will undergo chemotherapy for next 6 months after which time a team of surgeons will determine if the cancer has shrunk just enough to  do a mastectomy, which is, for those who do not know, a full removal of the breast. While chemotherapy helps to "kill" cancerous cells, it can not always distinguish the cancer from healthy cells. The result is an agonizing state of ongoing sickness and fatigue as mom struggles to fight off the cancer with a double-edged sword.

In preparation for the chemo, mom has decided to cut her hair short to avoid the shock of losing it all at once.  For mom, her long, pretty hair was a security blanket she clung to as a reminder of her own femininity and beauty. So when the day came to make the cut, it was more than an extremely difficult and emotional moment. It was a life-changing experience that gave her a new perspective on the reality of the situation. 

Throughout the years, mom has constantly worked and struggled hard to earn her keep and raise us the best she could; never once stopping to ask for help from anyone.

Year after year, mom has dedicated herself to my brothers and I. Taking on the challenges of a single mom just to ensure that we all enjoyed a good life. She has been there for every part of our lives, and now she needs us. 

While our family will be always be here to provide her with whatever she needs, the expenses involved fighting the cancer is leaving us with fewer and few options.  Because of the chemo, mom will not be able to work as much as she usually does, and despite our contributions, our means are simply not enough.

It is for this reason that I am now breaking mom's rule and asking for any help necessary. Any and all contributions will be absolutely cherished. The money that is being donated will be able to assist her with: chemotherapy bills, radiation, reconstructive surgery, medications, post-operational nutrition, and any other unanticipated expenses that may come around the bend.

Your support through GoFundMe would be a greatly appreciated. Every donation, no matter how small, would be a huge help to mom's treatment and recovery.

If you should believe yourself unable to make any monetary contributions, we are also willing to accept any personal assistance or favors in accompanying mom through her journey. In the end, we ask that you at least please keep her in your prayers and thoughts. Thank you so much for this opportunity.


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Michael Van Geldren 
North Arlington, NJ
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