Now through Mother’s Day (Sunday, May 11), Aflac will donate $2 to the Aflac Cancer Center for every tweet/retweet, or post/share on Twitter or Facebook using the #Duckprints hashtag
Aflac Duckprints is committed in its mission to eradicate childhood cancer. Thanks to donations made to the research and treatment of this disease, 75 percent of childhood cancers can now be cured. The ultimate mission of Duckprints is to eradicate childhood cancer.
Cancer Survivor and Mom, Trisha Henry Gaffney
On Valentine’s Day 1996, 19-year-old Trisha was diagnosed with embryonal rhabdomyosarcoma, an aggressive tumor usually found in the head, neck, hands or feet of young children. Trisha’s was the first reported case to occur in the right ureter, the tube connecting the kidney and bladder.
After going through surgery to remove her right kidney, ureter and a portion of her bladder, Trisha spent a year at the Aflac Cancer Center undergoing chemotherapy and radiation. Following her treatment for this rare form of cancer, Trisha Henry Gaffney was eager to put her health problems behind her. The last thing she wanted to do was dwell on the effects of her illness.
“After college, I devoted myself to my work and being normal,” Trisha said. “I put cancer behind me. Then it reared its ugly head at 32.” After several years of going to general doctors for check-ups, Trisha finally made an appointment with the Cancer Survivor Program at the Aflac Cancer Center.
During her first appointment at the Cancer Survivor Program, Trisha received her health records. She was able to gain a broad understanding of her entire health history, including her treatments and the issues they could cause, called late effects.
After meeting with the Medical Director, Trisha went to a fertility specialist, who delivered some devastating news. The lab work showed Trisha’s chemotherapy and 23 radiation treatments had wreaked havoc on her body. Only one ovary was functional, and the radiation had damaged her uterus; she was approaching an early menopause, and she would not be able to carry a child.
“It’s devastating when you can’t have a family,” Trisha said. “I froze my eggs that year. I thought, ‘Screw you, cancer! I want my own kid.’”
Taking Control and Moving Forward
After her sister’s best friend offered to be a surrogate, Trisha and Andrew, now her husband, became parents to Isabella in April 2013. Isabella just celebrated her first birthday, and this Mother’s Day will mark Trisha’s second, thanks to the Aflac Cancer Center and its programs.
The impact of the Aflac Cancer Center isn’t lost on Trisha. Without the intervention of doctors and nurses in her health, her life would be incredibly different.
“If I hadn’t had my friend telling me to go to the Cancer Survivor Program at the Aflac Cancer Center,” Trisha said, “I wouldn’t have my daughter.”
She encourages survivors to take advantage of the resources available through the Aflac Cancer Center so they can become healthy, happy adults ‒ and parents if they choose.
About Aflac Cancer Center
The Aflac Cancer Center and Blood Disorders Center of Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta is one of the largest childhood cancer centers in the country.
The Aflac Cancer Center is committed to providing childhood cancer patients a brighter future through advanced medical treatment, family-centered care, a child-friendly environment and innovative research. Aflac is proud to have donated more than $87 million to the Aflac Cancer Center, with the goal of reaching $100 million by the end of 2015.
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Aflac is the number one provider of supplemental insurance in the United States. Aflac is different from health insurance; it’s insurance for daily living. Aflac pays cash benefits quickly and directly to you to help with daily expenses when you’re sick or hurt. The benefits are pre-determined and paid regardless of any other insurance you have.
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Disclosure: This giveaway was made possible by Double Duty Divas and Aflac. I was compensated to participate in this campaign, but all opinions are 100% mine.