On August 11, 2017 my sister Bethany, 20 years of age was diagnosed with a rare aggressive cancer on her face called rhabdomyosarcoma. She began chemo and radiation therapy to slow down and kill the cancer in the hope to survive. She lost most of her hair by her 21st birthday which was in September, including her eyelashes and eyebrows.
Throughout the next 11 months she would fight for her life. Battling cancer, severe pain, nausea, vomiting and many complications like blood clots in her arm and lungs; including a severe infection that required surgery in her sinuses where the cancer was. By the grace and healing of God she went into complete remission just under one year later.
5 weeks into her recovery she became very sick. What the doctor’s thought was a case of gastro turned out to be encephalitis and meningitis. She was suffering from horrendous head and neck pain constantly for the first 3 weeks. She had a drain inserted into her brain to relieve incredible pressure in her head, but as the infection became resistant to treatment she required brain surgery for a VP Shunt.
As the pain in her head and neck started to ease, confusion and severe to total blindness in both eyes has become a major concern which she is currently battling. She continues using strong medication and requires constant care in the hope it will kill the virus, bringing her back to full health.
In light of this, Bethany has not been able to work or continue her studies of Law and Arts at Monash University now for 15 months. We are told by the doctors it will be at least another 12 months until she can go back, as long as there are no further complications and there is a steady increase of health. This has been a massive financial strain with huge continuous pharmacy bills, along with other short coming finances she will have to face when she gets better. Our Mum has also been out of work for the past month, as she needed to be with Bethany, placing further pressure on both of my parents.
We are extending our hands out to you and we are asking as a family if anyone would be able to help and support Bethany financially during this challenging time in her life, we would be forever grateful. The funds will be going towards her hospital and medical expenses and any way it can help support Bethany. If you cannot give financially we appreciate all the love, time and support you have shown and are continually giving Bethany, myself and my family. We are so blessed to be surrounded with close family and people who continually support, uplift and provide a shoulder to lean on.
Please feel free to share Bethany’s story as she has already touched so many lives, and I believe there are so many more she will continue to touch and inspire with her faith, strength and perseverance. She is such a blessing to all those around her; especially me.
Thanks so much for taking the time to listen to my sisters’ story.
With much love to you all,
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