Kirsten Earley

Kirsten Earley

 

kirsten

 

“When I was diagnosed with ovarian cancer at the age of 39, all I could think about was wanting to see my kids grow up. I was also overwhelmed with the amount of information out there; it seemed like for everything I read on the internet, there was conflicting information somewhere else. I needed help. My husband, Matt, contacted the Center for Patient Partnerships and spoke with Meg Gaines, who it turned out was also diagnosed with ovarian cancer as a young mother, and is a long term survivor. The immediate sense of hope and relief I felt after talking with her and the other advocates at CPP was instrumental in getting me through the months of chemo and surgeries. They had my back during the most difficult time in my life.

“One of the things about getting sick is the amount of expenses that stack up. Even with good insurance, there are co-pays for numerous appointments and medicines, alternative therapies like massage and nutrition counseling; these things add up. Upon receiving my diagnosis, one of the things I had to do was cancel months of freelance work I had lined up, because there was really no telling if I would be able perform my job (and as it happens, that was a good call). Some patient advocates charge upwards of $100 an hour; there is no way our family could have swung that, especially with the absence of my income. The fact that CPP renders its advocacy services at no cost to the patient is truly an amazing gift and asset to our community.

“I have been cancer-free for three years now, and look forward to seeing my older daughter, Siv, graduate from high-school in just over a year. My younger daughter, Lula, is about a foot taller now than she was when I was diagnosed. Every day is a gift and I’m living my dream of seeing my daughters grow up. I also know that if the need arises, the Center for Patient Partnerships will always have my back. For this I am grateful.”