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T-G-Inspiration-F! Darcy – 6 Years Old

October 8, 2010

I LOVE October. It is my favorite month of the whole year. So, for all the Inspiration Stories that I will be posting about this month, I can guarantee you one thing: They will ALL have happy endings. Guaranteed! I think St. Jude was feeling the way I feel because their October 2010 Patient of the Month just so happened to fit the bill!:

Darcy

6 years old

Diagnosis:

Darcy was found to suffer from an atypical teratoid/rhabdoid (ATRT) brain tumor in February 2009.

Darcy’s Story:

Darcy and her siblings were outdoorsy kids who loved riding horses. At just 4 years old, Darcy was an accomplished rider and roper and had already earned a championship belt buckle for her skills. But life took a turn in late 2008 when Darcy fell and hit her head at school. She started suffering from terrible headaches and began vomiting within moments of opening her eyes each morning. Soon after, Darcy’s parents were devastated when tests revealed she suffered from a deadly brain tumor known as ATRT.

“It felt like a freight train,” Darcy’s mom said of learning the news. “I was trembling and shaking. Your life as you know it ends.”

Darcy underwent a 10-hour surgery to remove the deadly tumor, and her parents started to research the best options for her continuing care. That search led them to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, and they obtained a referral.

At St. Jude:

Darcy received four courses of chemotherapy and 31 radiation treatments. Despite her often grueling treatment, Darcy thrived at St. Jude. She loved participating in all the activities at the hospital, especially arts and crafts. To see her flourish meant the world to her parents.

Darcy’s family is appreciative of everything St. Jude provides for families, from housing to grocery cards. That they will never receive a bill from St. Jude means they can focus on what’s important: Darcy. This has inspired them to help support St. Jude. “I’ll keep giving,” her mother said. “It makes a difference, even $20.”

Darcy has finished treatment and is now home with her family. “My hope for Darcy is to keep having birthdays,” her mother said. “We’re so proud of St. Jude and what they’ve done for her.”

Now that she is home, Darcy is back in school and she loves playing with her siblings. Darcy is also back to riding horses. She started slow on an old, gentle horse, but now she rides a fast one again.

_____________________________________________________________________

Just as a reminder, I didn’t choose St. Jude as my favorite charity just because they need money. I chose (and will always choose) them because of what they do, who they treat, what their results are and what they do with the money they receive.

Now Darcy, I’m really scared of the 15 miles I have to run tomorrow, but I’m sure you were scared when had to go through treatment. Surely, if you can go through all of what you went through and then get back on a horse and continue to go to school, then I know I can run. Congratulations on your bravery, courage, and determination; tomorrow’s 15 Miles are dedicated to you.

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