Zaria was diagnosed with B-ALL Lukemeia in December 2021. 5 months before her diagnosis, Zaria had complaints of leg pain, and headaches that would come and go. We had ER and primary care doctor visits that pretty much resulted in not seeing anything wrong, and suggestions of changing the type of shoes she was wearing and lightening the load of things she would carry in her backpack. The thought was this could cause her to strain her muscles. The day after Christmas I woke up to her screaming at the top of her lungs because the pain was unbearable. We rushed to our local ER and they began doing tests. From x-rays to ultrasounds. They saw fluid on her left hip and decided to go in and extract it for testing. Both the x-ray and the test came back normal. But it was the results of her blood work that was concerning. We were taken to a children’s hospital that was better equipped to care for Zaria. Three days had passed, and they were still running tests. December 29th, 2021, I was asked to join a team of doctors outside of Zaria’s room for an update. That day will forever be a core memory. This would be the first time in my adult life that I wished I had superpowers so I could take it all away.
We are two years into treatment. Zaria has had some great days and some not-so-great days, but she’s here and will continue to fight.