Emily Sandusky is a 4x Leukemia survivor. She's a former Special Education teacher and author of Hope Triumphs ALL. She's an independent consultant with a holistic health, skin, and beauty company where she helps people discover the powerful connection between mind, body, skin, and soul.
Hi! I am Emily Sandusky! I am a 4x Leukemia survivor.
Cancer is one loaded word that can be described by a million other words, perspectives, emotions, feelings, frustrations, worries, doubts, confusion, and overwhelm. A word that no one wants to be applied to their life. A word that often leads to, “Why me?”.
My cancer story starts when I was first diagnosed with Leukemia in kindergarten when I was 5 years old. I didn’t understand the severity of it all. I knew it meant a lot of “pokes” and throwing up! At the time anti-nausea medicine and ports were not a thing. The perks were I missed a lot of school, got chips from the vending machine, spend time with my mom, and extra attention. After two years I was done with chemo.
When I was 11 years old, I relapsed. As a middle schooler, I was embarrassed and self-conscious to lose my hair. I hated people looking at me wondering what was wrong with me and missing sports and friends. I did my best to continue life - going to school, planning chemo around tests, spending time with friends, and playing soccer. Two more years of chemo and into remission.
When I was a junior in high school, 17 years old, about to be a starter on the varsity soccer team, l relapsed again. This time severe hip pain led to the discovery that Leukemia was back. It felt like my world was shattering around me. I was playing the best soccer of my life, surrounded by incredible friends, and loving life…and then this! Cancer! I was angry and frustrated and disappointed and couldn’t believe I had to go through this again! I had a stem cell transplant, responded great, and back into remission I went.
During my freshman year in college at Northwestern University, 19 years old, I relapsed again. The 4th and final time having Leukemia. Two more years of chemo and anti-body treatment and I was back in remission. This time was different. My body really struggled. I had an infection in my face that quickly spread throughout my body. A reaction to a medication caused severe diarrhea and I lost 30 pounds in a few weeks. I had a neurological reaction to a medication that left me not remembering a whole week of my life. It was scary!
Through it all I knew I was going to make it. I knew there was a bigger plan for me.
I have been cancer free for 21 years! I deal with some late effects like being infertile and having a type of arthritis called Avascular Necrosis which has led to 4 joint replacements and cataracts. My husband Ryan and I live in Colorado with our 7-year-old identical twin boys! I have a business where I get to educate & empower people to take care of their bodies, feel their best, and create a life they love full of joy, abundance, and health.
I would never wish cancer upon anyone, however, I am grateful for the perspective, purpose, and connections it has given me. I wrote a book called Hope Triumphs ALL to give other people the extra courage and strength they need to get through their own challenges and obstacles. Stay tuned for a children’s book that is in the works!