Victoria “Turtle” Williams

“Victoria “Turtle” Williams was diagnosed with B cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia in June of 2017. She was just 22 months old at the time. Being the youngest of four children, I started to notice that something was not right. She didn’t want to play, rarely smiled, and screamed as if she was in pain when you tickled her, or changed her diaper, or moved her. Before she was diagnosed she stopped walking. The doctors originally treated this as a “pediatric fracture” and her leg was immobilized for several weeks. It turns out that she had stopped walking because every movement was so painful for her. Her oncologist said her bones were completely “compacted” with cancer cells and that every movement and touch was “extremely painful”. Can you imagine finding out that every time you hugged your baby, it hurt her. Every diaper change, hurt. Every clothing change, every bath, every tickle, hurt. Victoria ended her treatment on her 4th birthday in August of 2019. She was in treatment for 795 days. She has had over 25 spinal taps. She has been through more in her short life than I ever could have imagined. We all have. We know now how to be grateful for every smile and ever giggle and ever “Mama! Tickle me!” The road has been long and although Victoria is not considered “cured” until her cancer has not returned for five years, we are hopeful that the worst is behind us.”

 

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