About Me

For those of you who have been following for a while know that I spent four months in the fall of 2017 studying abroad in Amsterdam which was the trip of a lifetime. I am so grateful to have had that experience because shortly after returning to America I fell pretty badly on a patch of black ice on my way to school. My back hurt pretty bad and eventually, it got so bad I wasn’t able to do my favorite sport, skiing. This led me to start going to the doctors in late February and asking questions. First, the school nurse put me on muscle relaxers to try to help with my muscle spasms which were preventing sleep and causing me to yell out in pain every night. Then, when I came home for spring break I went to my primary care doctor who suggested I try physical therapy. The only problem was that I needed to wait until I was back in Amherst to go to the physical therapist. Unfortunately, at that time the pain only grew worse and worse and I ended up in the emergency room on St. Patrick’s Day. They did a few scans and tests but the nurses and doctors there could find nothing wrong besides some constipation issues which had occurred due to the severity of the pain in my back. The following Sunday a family friend Michelle, who is also a nurse came over to check my vitals due to the pain only increasing and the screaming all night keeping my parents awake. She believed there had to be something more going on. On Monday, I had to return to school and I had to pull over several times to stretch out my back. I went to my first physical therapy appointment where they pretty much took an assessment of what was going on. As you can guess the pain was so bad I was screaming and crying calling my parents to PLEASE come to pick me up. Eventually, they did and took me to the emergency room again where they just gave me more laxatives which did not help, then they recommended I go to see a back specialist. He also wasn’t quite sure what was going in my back so he sent my scans to another doctor and I went back to school with my neighbor since I could no longer drive at this point. When I got back to school my colleague took me to a physical therapy appointment which helped a little, but I was so sick it was hard to tell. The next day I couldn’t even make it through my classes, I just went to one to take a 15-minute reading quiz before running out in screaming pain. At this point, I could no longer sit in a chair, the only thing that gave me any relief was laying in my bed with my heating pad on high, with the occasional laying on the hard floor or on my spike massage pad. Because I could only lay down to find relief it was very hard for me to even eat. Later that day, I got a call from my Orthopedic doctor that changed everything, he said: “The spots on your back are abnormal, I’m not sure if they are malignant or benign, you need to come in tomorrow morning so you can get a biopsy.” I started shaking and yelled for my roommate Lindsey to come into my room where I just hugged her and cried in fear of the unknown. I called my parents who jumped in the car and came to pick me up. I was so scared I barely said a word on the long car ride home. The next morning the doctor came to his office early to talk to me and admit me to Salem Hospital first where I stayed for one night where they put me on stronger pain meds so I could finally get some sleep. The next day I was transported via ambulance to Massachusetts General Hospital where I was biopsied twice over the course of 10 days before I was finally diagnosed with Ewing Sarcoma. A rare type of bone cancer.