Sirpa's Cancer Treatment Fund

My name is Sirpa Kristiina Hakkinen, and I was diagnosed with Aggressive BrCA1 breast cancer.  

In June of 2014 I met the love of my life, Kalle (native from Finland) in my home country, Finland, while he was traveling from the states where he has lived for the past 23 years.

There was no denying the feelings we had for one another and I knew my life was drastically going to change in order for us to build a life together. As a general part of this process, a full body exam/checkup is required by US government in order to travel and apply for my fiancé visa. I was cleared with a clean bill of health and was well on my way to begin the next chapter of my journey. In summer of 2015 my 15 and 17-year-old daughters Nayla, Leena and I visited the states to fully experience what our lives would be like and if we were ready to make a BIG move. The excitement was overwhelming as we explored what we knew was going to be our new “home”, America.

After traveling back to Finland at the end of the summer, Nayla and I packed our bags and optimistically made the leap from Finland to the states in December of 2015. My oldest daughter Leena decided she would finish her studies in Europa.

Kalle and I were in absolute bliss. He wholeheartedly loved not only myself but my daughters as he accepted them as his own. February 6th, 2016, we danced the night away, we laughed and cried tears of joy during our wedding night amongst family and friends. I was living a dream, MY dream. As I recall during this time I was experiencing dull abdominal pain which I could not pay much attention to and shrugged off (for the time being) so I could just enjoy my wedding and the emotions newlyweds share during such a significant time. I thought to myself, “this can’t be very serious, as I was just cleared by the immigration doctors 100% healthy”.

Shortly thereafter our wedding, the pain set in. I was beginning to notice it was stemming from a small bulge in my lower abdomen that I previously considered bloat. I felt something was wrong and immediate action needed to be taken. On February 11th 16, just five days after our wedding, I went to the doctors to seek answers. I was promptly referred by my general primary care physician to an OBGYN specialist for further testing. Never would I have thought the news I was about to receive. I had stage 3b / 4 fallopian tube cancer, later diagnosed as Breast Cancer (BRCA1).

The doctor was explaining the severity of my diagnosis and it was very hard for me to comprehend. I was facing this devastating news alone, in a foreign country. My mind was spinning… What caused such advanced cancer in my body within a short 2 months? How could I tell my husband of just 5 days such distressing news? My daughters? I was in complete shock, thinking my life was over. The doctor came back to the room to tell me “I just got off the phone with your husband, I told him the news, he will be here shortly.” I felt like my heart was being ripped out of my chest. How could he have done that without consulting with me first? Words cannot describe the feeling that overcame me.

My medical journey now began. The cancer was very aggressive, my tumor was rapidly growing and an immediate operation was needed.   

Surgery February 19th, 2016: A total hysterectomy, followed by biopsy: The diagnosis at the regional hospital determined the cancer metastasized to the peritoneum of my stomach, uterus, bilateral ovaries, cervix, fallopian tubes, and lymph nodes.

After my surgery, as advised by my oncologist, I chose conventional treatment. Chemotherapy followed to remove residing cancer cells. After months of treatment, it worked and July 2016 my follow up tests showed I was now in remission. What wonderful news! Prayers were answered and I considered myself a miracle. As I was extremely grateful, there were complications during my surgery that lead to nerve damage in my right leg and my quality of life was permanently impaired, I could no longer walk. Even though I am still suffering from nerve damage, without any feeling in my leg, after months of physical therapy, I have miraculously trained myself to walk again.

As I went on to try and lead a normal life I experienced many challenges. Physically, personally, family matters, the list could go on. I continued to battle the nerves in my leg, the whole process lead to heavy stress on my marriage, and now my mother was diagnosed with Dementia in Germany. I’m thinking to myself, “Wow, I just overcame advanced cancer and life continues to throw curveballs… how much can one take?” As I always have put everyone close to me in my life first, I traveled to Germany to aid my mother. I moved her into a nursing home, sold, separated and boxed all of her possessions and belongings, as well as comforted her through this life-changing process. I was very drained, incredibly sad, and not to mention lonely during this time. I missed my husband, my daughter, MY LIFE, that I should have been rebuilding after the cancer. For 3 months, I put my life on hold to help my mother, and of course, without question that’s exactly what I was going to do, she is my mother. Through all the stress I did have many guardian angels looking over me, providing me with unbelievable amounts strength to complete such a task. Therefore, I was grateful and knew I was doing the right thing.

After all was said and done I happily returned to the states on April, 4th 2017. Extremely excited to see my daughter, husband, dogs, home, friends, etc.!!! Now it was time to focus on my own life. I had a follow-up appointment with my doctors that I was sure to be home for on April 5. Eager to hear how my body was doing since remission, I was re-diagnosed with the same cancer for the second time. Here came the thoughts/questions again... Why? How much can one take? I have always lead a very healthy lifestyle consisting of clean eating, yoga, meditation, and overall lived life abiding the “universal laws.” After already going through this before I had a different outlook on my thoughts and questions as in “why?” As a result of my first experience, I began to think more deeply. Every day someone or something comes into my life and PROVIDES. I consider “my path” a spiritual eye-opening experience and I am mentally strong enough to hurdle over any obstacles standing in my way.

Because what I did the first time worked, I chose to do the same treatment this time around as well. I have my young daughters to live for, they are the light of my life. If that means going through the grueling pain of chemotherapy, so be it. I have gone through 3 rounds and the oncologists have now told me it is not working. I have become weak and do not feel comfortable perusing this treatment that only provides a short (miserable) time. After researching morning, noon, and night I have come up with many beneficial holistic “remedies”, but they are not treatment that will cure my rapidly growing cancer. I knew I would have to find a holistic treatment center that will do more than what I am able to provide myself. I have since found my new journey, the Gerson Therapy in Sedona, Arizona. I need to go on a two-week stay at a clinic where you are monitored every single day by a doctor. You heal your body with nutrition- vitamins, minerals, and enzymes. You are also given up to five enemas a day to cleanse and detoxify the liver. It is a two-year long treatment and I will be monitored through monthly blood tests. I have researched and read incredible stories, journeys, outcomes, miracles, and I truly believe this is exactly what I need.

Unfortunately, insurance does not cover this type of treatment. My husband and I are very worried about our financial situation and are struggling to find the means. We have already spent over $30,000 out of pocket on the traditional treatment and now entering the program.

I am 54 years old and want to keep fighting!  I want to live to see my daughters graduate, get married, and have their own children. This treatment is very expensive, and I haven't been able to work for close to 2 years.  Any donation is much appreciated no matter how small.  Please help me in saving my life. <3

For those of you suffering from cancer or know someone going through this horrible disease, know that this is not the end. Do not let the oncologist scare you into getting chemo or radiation. It has been proven that those treatments do more harm than good. Do your research and have faith. Be strong, think positive and know that there is a lot of support out there! 

God bless you all and may he give you health and happiness.

Yours faithfully,

Sirpa

 

 
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Organizer and beneficiary

Sarah Jane Kurimsky 
Organizer
Boca Raton, FL
Sirpa Hákkinen 
Beneficiary
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