Hodgkin’s Lymphoma= Refractory Hodgkins= The Loss of Hillary St. Pierre
Hillary St. Pierre – the obscenity that is the curable cancer(Hodgkin’s Lymphoma) overcame her incredible will and need to live. This wonderful young woman who fought for herself and others was taken . I am angry , crying for someone I never met only through her words – and yet I know her – knew her – and the loss of her is painful.
When my son’s Hodgkin’s came back less than a month after being given the all clear from a double stem cell transplant and hope and cure were dangled once again in the form of SGN35– my daughter searched the internet -we had stayed off the internet trusting to the Dr.s and the medical knowledge of his wife. We should have researched sooner. But it was through that search that I met Hillary – lives and cancer touching in cyber space.
After Chris died I still went to Hillary’s blog http://baldiesblog.blogspot.com/ every day – the way she chronicled what was happening to her- her body – the experiences and her medical knowledge helped me understand what had happened to my son .
Hillary chronicled her experiences, of fighting the disease, the health insurance, the trials, the terminology – she walked you through a life of a cancer patient holding nothing back , explaining everything from healthcare to her inner most thoughts. Hillary wrote with humor and hope.
She fought for others and for herself and her family and life.
She wrote of being comatose , the things that would get through to her as she lay in that state- and her words helped me to know that I should not have regretted the things I did and didn’t do when my son lay trapped in that hospital bed . Although I emailed her and told her how her words had helped me she could never know how much she touched my life. We shared emails and thoughts and she read Chris’s story and reached out to a grieving mother whilst fighting her own battle- she took time to help me.
Now this fabulous young wife , mother, daughter, sister is silenced- but her words will live on . It is my hope that through Hillary’s words and pain that the myths of Hodgkin’s Lymphoma will be explored and it will be taken very seriously by those that diagnose . Her blog should be mandatory reading for residents and Drs. as to what happens from a patient’s perspective – Oncologists too , I believe after dealing with a couple of them even they the “specialists” could use a dose of Hillary’s reality . Read her words – listen to her now stilled voice – just maybe you will find in her journey a clue as to what happens when Hodgkin’s returns and continues to take the flower of our youth from us.
Hillary St.Pierre received her BSN in nursing, practicing as a critical care and emergency department registered nurse and researching the differences in health care among social classes in Harlem prior to her diagnosis with Hodgkin’s disease in 2006 at the age of 23. She has chronicled her battle with cancer and health care on her blog: baldiesblog.blogspot.com, which was listed by The American Cancer Society among The Top Ten for patient written cancer resources. As a Professional Patient she has advocated with The American Cancer Society, Citizens Health Alliance, and Working Families Win. She has contributed politically as a stakeholder for NH Department of Health’s Health Information Exchange working towards creating an electronic medical record system. She is a lifelong New England resident, wife and mom. Hillary continues to battle lymphoma alongside fighting for improvements in healthcare
Hillary’s father wrote a few days ago
Meanwhile the cancer is back again for I believe the 14th time. Hillary’s body has found away to beat 13 types of Chemo and drug treatments. Her body has found away to fight with her graffs cells too. How could a person so loving and friendly fight so hard. We keep telling her to fight this sickness but her body keeps fighting the cures!!
And now the world has lost another bright light and hot tears flow from the eyes of those that loved her and from the eyes of those she never really knew but who have followed her journey ………….. PEACE Hillary ………