Jameeliah Joy Hadley
Cancer: Wilms Tumor
Written by Jameeliah Joy Hadley
"But I’m happy to say that I'm 30 years cancer free!"
My name is Jameeliah Joy Hadley. I’m a wife, mother of 3, author of a children’s book: “My Very Special Scar” and a childhood cancer survivor. It was Christmas day in 1987, just three days after my 6th birthday when I was diagnosed with a rare type of childhood cancer that affects the kidneys called Wilms Tumor. My left kidney could not be saved so it had to be removed. I left my kindergarten class looking “normal” and came back several weeks later looking completely different. The life saving operation left a huge scar from my clavicle to my pelvis. While I was recovering in the hospital I was only allowed to eat chicken broth and jell-o for breakfast, lunch and dinner. I hated both so I lost a considerable amount of weight. Once I was finally out of the hospital I had to go thru chemotherapy which left me with not a single hair on my head. So when I finally was cleared to go back to school I was extremely thin, completely bald and had a scar on my chest. To make a long story short, kids & adults can be cruel, intentionally and unintentionally, so going back to kindergarten AFTER surviving cancer was one hardest times of my life. The teasing, whispers, pointing fingers and the many-many questions was something I was not prepared for, it was something no one warned me of. It was constantly a reminder of something I was trying so hard to forget. But I’m happy to say that I’m 30 years cancer free!