Like so many people, cancer caught me totally off guard. In February 2012, I was hospitalized with multiple compression fractures which led to my diagnosis of multiple myeloma. Initial treatment included chemotherapy, an autologous stem cell transplant, followed by maintenance chemotherapy. Fourteen months later I relapsed. Now what? It turned out that I was a candidate for an allogeneic stem cell transplant and by the grace of God, a donor match was found. Four years after my second transplant, my myeloma returned.
Currently, I am responding well to treatment. Life is back to a new normal! How do I deal with the emotional ups and downs of myeloma? One way is by staying active. Exercise helps reduce fatigue, clears my mind and maintains bone health.It’s a win-win-win! My personal fitness goal is to walk 30 minutes a day. Everyone’s myeloma journey is different; set a goal that works for you.
It’s important that I give my mind a break from doctor’s appointments, lab tests and all things related to myeloma. There are some things I can’t control and worrying about them does more harm than good. I enjoy cooking, easy DIY projects, reading and helping others through the Myeloma Coach program. Volunteering gives me the opportunity to share my knowledge and personal experiences with other myeloma patients. It gives me a sense of purpose. On occasion, I lend a hand to the HealthTree University (HTU) video team. HTU is a valuable resource for both newly diagnosed and relapsed myeloma patients. I wish the information provided through HTU was an option when I was first diagnosed.
I am blessed and grateful for the dynamic support system I have. My family, friends and medical team are the best! They continue to give me the strength and hope I need to continue moving forward.
It’s key that I stay focused on the positive aspects of life and take one day at a time. It hasn’t always been an easy trek, but I’ve met some remarkable people along the way.
We are stronger together!
Jenn is a Myeloma Coach, mentor and friend to many. She resides with her family in Eastern Massachusetts.
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about the author
Rozalynn Hite is the Myeloma Coach Director and wife of myeloma patient Richard Hite. Rozalynn is an occupational therapist and mother of three beautiful children.