Hello! Thanks for visiting my Care Page. This is how I plan to keep friends & family informed about my journey and how I am doing.
For those of you who aren't familiar with my story, my name is Kelly Schmahl. On September 27, 2016, at the age of 18, I was diagnosed with a Stage III Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumor (GIST). A gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST) is a tumor that occurs in the gastrointestinal tract, most commonly in the stomach or small intestine. My tumor, whom I refer to as Farley, is located in my stomach and four surrounding lymph nodes (Marley, Carley, Charlie, and Harley). Unfortunately, Farley & friends are cancerous and in order to get rid of them, I've embarked on a journey filled with hospitals, chemo treatments, tests, scans, and more doctors and nurses than I can count.
I am a 2016 graduate of Notre Dame Academy and began my freshman year of college at Northern Kentucky University where I found a home in Delta Zeta sorority. I have decided to take the Spring 2017 semester off of school to focus on my health and treatment.
I began my first cycle of chemotherapy treatment on October 3, 2016. Cycle 1 consisted of 10 weeks of treatments and a full body scan to finish off. On December 1, I received news that my current "chemo cocktail" was not effectively working and while my main tumor had not grown nor shrunk, 2 of the tumors in my lymph nodes expanded in size. I will begin Cycle 2 of chemotherapy treatments on January 2, 2017. This specific treatment will be a more concentrated and stronger dose than my previous medicine and therefore will be extremely stressful on my physical and mental health.
Being raised in the Catholic Church has gifted me with a good relationship with my God. I fully believe in the power of prayer- specifically prayer to the Blessed Mother. If you have a moment, please say a short Hail Mary for me and all those who have been impacted by my diagnosis.