Several years ago, we were able to provide a Meredith’s Miracles grant to Abby Bott. Abby is an amazing young woman who we had the privilege to meet later at one of our speaking engagements at Purdue University. She told her story to an audience of young women and we are happy to share it with you now in her own words:
I was going through a stressful time in my life when I began to notice some weight loss, abdominal pain, and finally, blood in my stools. I was entering my final semester of college when I began going to the doctor about these symptoms that I assumed could only be an ulcer caused by the stress. On November 3, 2009 I had the colonoscopy that changed my life. At 23 I found out I had stage III rectal cancer. My tumor was the size of a softball.
Less than three weeks later, I began daily chemo and radiation treatments. In the face of illness and constant doctor appointments, I graduated from the University of Illinois that December with a Bachelor’s in psychology. I endured the daily treatments for seven weeks, and then had surgery to remove the tumor on March 1, 2010.
After a short recovery period, I began a second, post-surgery, preventative round of chemo. I spent the whole summer terribly sick, but a light of hope was brought to my attention when a family friend told me about the Meredith’s Miracles Colon Cancer Foundation’s website and grants.
I was facing a great financial hardship due to my disease. I was a student working and scraping my way through school when I was diagnosed. My student insurance was set to end after graduation. Reading through the website, I felt a connection with Meredith’s story right away. I knew she would have understood what I was going through, and I admired that she and her family wanted to help and serve others.
MMCCF paid for three months of my car payments and rent, which meant a great deal as I was able to stay in my college town with the doctors I trusted and my friends who were my caregivers and support system.
Finding this organization was one of the biggest blessings of my entire cancer ordeal. I am so thankful to have found Meredith’s Miracles and to have had the opportunity to meet Meredith’s amazing family.