Quinci's Story:

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Meet Quinci, Survivor, Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia

“Hey! My name is Quinci - I am a cancer survivor.

The summer of 2017 before my senior year of high school, I began cross country conditioning (as I did every summer) but this year, what should have been my most successful year athletically, was different. I could hardly run 100 meters without having to stop because I had absolutely no energy and I felt faint. When my teammates would go to do fun things like get smoothies or play cards after practice, I would have to decline invitations because I was just too tired to function. I would go home and take naps for several hours on end. I remember one day waking up after a five-hour nap drenched in sweat and feeling just as drained and honestly yuckier than before.

My parents insisted on taking me to the doctor to get my blood drawn. Once they got the results, they didn’t know what was wrong with me, they just knew I had to go to the hospital right away. Once I was at the hospital, they ran many more tests and did a bone marrow biopsy. That was where they found the leukemia. On august 2nd, 2017 I was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia and I started chemo 2 days later. All throughout my treatment my doctors and nurses would sometimes call me a bump in the road kid, pretty much whatever complications could happen, would happen. Within the first month of Chemo I had a pulmonary embolism that caused part of my lung to become necrotic, I had to have a partial lobectomy and spent about a month in the hospital. A couple months later I had a rare complication called methotrexate toxicity where I was practically in a vegetative state for 3 days, and then spent the weeks to come in the neuro trauma unit, undergoing intense physical therapy. The next few months after that were good! I was working hard and finishing up my ten months of intense Chemo. Looking forward everyday to maintenance, where my hair would grow back, when I would graduate high school, when I would get to go on my make a wish trip to Italy, and when I’d only have to go back to get Chemo once a month. However, I wouldn’t be the bump in the road kid if it weren’t for one last hurrah! 6 months into maintenance my knee started to ache a little, I went a few weeks without doing anything about it until I was LIMPING because of the pain—it was then that I was diagnosed with avascular necrosis of the knee, caused by prednisone.

Fast forward a year, the same AVN diagnosis in my elbow as my knee, a year of college, a few inches of hair, finishing chemo completely THEN FINALLY I was able to get the surgeries to mend my AVN, in fact I am sitting here, typing this one handed because less than a week ago I had the opportunity to get my elbow fixed. (Recovery is going great, thanks!) and I’m crossing my fingers that this surgery, was my last. It was the last thing after my cancer journey to check off the list. Now I look forward, using my experiences to help others through their hard times, and being thankful everyday for my life.”