I'm raising money for Mary. She has been fighting for her life. Mary's life has been profoundly affected; she is unable to work and needs assistance with daily tasks. Please help me create a miracle for Mary. Thank you.
Hello, I'm Dee, and I stand by Mary's side as her life partner.
A lot of people asked me “Have you ever felt exhausted and wanted to stop?” I said “the only thing that will stop me doing this for Mary is ….. Death.
Mary, who has been fighting against brain cancer 2 times in her life. She was diagnosed with an incurable form of brain cancer called Glioblastoma Grade 4 in 2017 when she was just 27 years old and recurrent in June 2023.
On September 11, 2017, she experienced unexplained vomiting and headaches, but she still insisted on going to work as usual. Unfortunately, her condition rapidly deteriorated. Mary collapsed while working at her restaurant job and had a seizure. She was immediately taken to the nearest hospital. The ambulance rushed her to the emergency department of NewYork-Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital. At the time, Mary was completely unconscious, her body limp, mouth open and her limbs stiffened.
The doctor conducted a CT/MRI and found a 1.5 inch mass on the right side of Mary’s brain. A tissue sample had to be taken for examination. The news we didn't want to hear happened. When the doctor said that it was 'cancer' - Glioblastoma Grade 4 which is very aggressive and currently, there is no cure. It grows fast and can spread quickly, so by the time it’s diagnosed, the chances for survival are low. Only 5% of patients survive more than five years and 6.9% of patients survive more than 8 months
The doctor explained the various potential risks that could occur to Mary. Nonetheless, with a strong mindset and a desire to continue living, she refused to give in. Mary made the decision to undergo surgery. The surgery went well as the doctor was able to remove the mass. However, she still had to undergo an 8-month course of chemotherapy, paired with 8 weeks of radiation therapy and physical rehabilitation.
Mary had to fight with the cancer and endure numerous side effects. She tried to recover as quickly as possible in order to return to full-time work. She didn't have health insurance, which resulted in significant out-of-pocket expenses. Mary strived to move forward with a positive mindset, constantly reminding herself that she wasn't defined by her circumstances.
In 2021, as COVID-19 spread heavily, it led to the gradual closure of restaurants in New York. Consequently, Mary made the decision to relocate to Florida where COVID-19 cases were not as high as in New York. Restaurants, businesses, and various companies were still operating normally.
4 years went by - in June 2023, Mary had an MRI appointment scheduled. 2 days before the appointment, she experienced numbness on the right side and the scan revealed that the tumor had returned, on the left side.
This time, Mary qualified for limited income-based health insurance, but it only applied in New York. So, Mary had to move back to New York City where she used to live. This insurance only partially covered her treatments, leaving her with a significant amount of out-of-pocket expenses.
Additionally, she had to pay an early lease termination fee for her apartment in Florida. The amount was $4,800.
In August 2023, this time the medical team decided not to perform surgery to remove the tumor due to its complicated case. Mary has multiple enhancing lesions within the brain, totaling more than 8 spots ranging from 0.9 to 4.1 cm in size. And also due to insurance limitations and expenses, other treatment options were ruled out. The doctor will proceed with treatment using chemotherapy and radiation therapy.
Up to this point, Mary has undergone 12 rounds of radiation from a total of 33 cycles in the initial treatment plan. She still needs to continue using chemotherapy for at least another year.
Unfortunately, Mary does not have any family members in the United States, just supportive friends here. The money we had saved was used up in that first round of treatments back in 2017, and since then, we have been struggling to make ends meet. It's been over two months now since she was last able to work, and I had to take time off from my own job to care for her and accompany her to doctor's appointments. We try to save money by taking the bus to radiation sessions 5 days per week.
Currently, she’s like a child who’s just beginning to learn how to speak, struggling to find the right words for everyday things. The tumor is located in an area that affects her memory, speech, hearing, writing, and ability to communicate. The right side of her body remains numb, making her right hand less dexterous. Her walks are reduced to mere short distances. Mary is unable to live her life independently or go back to work due to all of these symptoms.
There are nights when I lie awake, wondering how we'll navigate through the difficulties that have consumed our lives. Mary's spirit, however, remains unbroken. So, we continue this journey, one step at a time.
As of right now, our funds are running extremely low. We've never wanted to burden anyone. But if we don't receive additional funds, she may not be able to undergo another treatment in the near future. Our only wish is to have enough money for her to complete the treatment process. With more funds, she could afford Immunotherapy and targeted therapy which costs approximately $3,000-$5,000 each per month.
Mary's life has been profoundly affected; she is unable to work and needs assistance with daily tasks. My friends and I have started a fundraising campaign to gather funds for her treatment.
Please consider supporting Mary in her fight against cancer. Even a small donation would make a difference, just $1 per person or what you can give. We can't do this alone and can't extend Mary's life on our own. Your support means everything to us. We won't give up, just like Mary, who never gives up and continues to fight for her life.
Help us create a miracle for Mary.
Thank you for all the support and encouragement from everyone genuinely standing by Mary. From the bottom of our hearts, thank you.