An area child battling cancer has more to smile about as she completes her latest course of treatment. NewsChannel 10's Michelle Langowski was there and in this week's "Health Watch" shares what lies ahead.
The last two and half years have been anything but easy for Kaylee Rider. She recently overcame her latest obstacle, and is looking forward to being a kid again. "Be strong and you can't stop," advice that helped seven year old Kaylee get through her second round of chemotherapy and radiation treatments.
We first introduced you to her earlier this year. Kaylee has been battling Wilm's Tumor, a type of kidney cancer that progressed into her lungs when she was five years old. Last week she went to the doctor to receive what is hopefully her last course of chemotherapy.
"I'm happy and I'm excited that it's over and we can get back to our normal lives and just have some more fun," said her mom Rachel.
But, after already having to tell Kaylee her cancer came back once, they are a little more guarded this time around. "I think that's the hardest part of the whole thing is telling her. I think last time I had the doctors do it. I couldn't tell her. So this time around I am definitely not saying you are done and your completely over...even though that's what I hope and pray that it is over. But I would never tell her that."
This past treatment of chemo and radiation was a lot stronger than the first and it took it's toll on Kaylee's fragile body. "Last time I did the chemo it didn't make me very sick. Then this time (it did)," remembers Kaylee. Her mom adds, "the ones that we got last year hardly affected her at all. It kids of made her tired and everything, but her counts were always up ready for the next chemo. This time, even the lower doses that we got last time lowered her counts."
The Rider family hopes this time will be different and that the stronger treatment will be enough to keep her cancer free so she can go back to being a kid. "It's been a wake-up call. I look at everything differently. We're going to try and have a lot more fun and get out. Before it was just hang out here. We're changing the way, I guess, we perceive life," says her dad, Brent.
Once her body builds itself back up after the tough course of chemo Kaylee is looking forward to her hair growing back and getting the lizard she has been waiting for but couldn't have. She explains why, "because I always wanted one and I can't get it right now because it has salmonella... I can't very say it."
*We want to thank Kaylee and the Rider family for allowing us into their lives and for sharing their story.