Harold is a Leukemia and MDS cancer survivor who used MyLifeLine.org during his journey. Today he writes a guest blog post for us and shares his leukemia and MDS cancer story.
“I felt knocked back on my heels,” Harold recalled. “I knew something was wrong.” He was right. After a visit to his doctor and a bone marrow biopsy, Harold Sneed was diagnosed with leukemia. He and his wife of 27 years, Debbie, were shocked.
Four years earlier at the age of 59, Harold was diagnosed with myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) and said he always knew leukemia was a real possibility, but he was still stunned and shaken at his new diagnosis. He immediately underwent intense, high doses of chemotherapy, followed by a bone marrow stem cell transplant. During his treatment, a social worker at his cancer center recommended MyLifeLine.org to Harold and Debbie to keep their friends and family up-to-date on his treatment, inevitable setbacks and continued progress.
“We had so many people who wanted to know about what was going on,” said Harold. “It was so nice to be able to update everyone at once.”
Harold and Debbie recalled the plethora of support they received from family, friends and their community.
“We’ve had people reaching out to us every day through MyLifeLine.org,” he said. “It just amazed me. Even though they don’t always comment, you know they’re following. In addition, when you talk to them, they know your whole story and you don’t have to spend time updating them on everything.”
Since the Sneeds live in Kentucky and travelled to Tennessee for treatment, Harold recalled often feeling isolated after being away from home for long periods of time. “MyLifeLine.org was incredible. I was able to hear from people I haven’t heard from in a long time, whole churches were praying for us, people that lived far away; it really boosted my spirits. I was amazed at what I was able to do with all the support I had.”
After a year of enduring lengthy treatment, unpleasant side effects and exhaustive procedures, Harold’s leukemia went into remission. He continues to fight MDS, but is optimistic and recently celebrated a healthy 30-day check-up at his cancer center in Nashville. Harold said he’s learning to adjust to his new normal, works to keep a positive attitude and thanks “my wonderful wife for being with me all the way.”