Lauren is hoping that after she finishes cancer treatment, she can get a dog. She is excited to teach her new dog tricks like sit, roll-over and play fetch. But, she’s most excited to snuggle with her furry friend while watching her favorite Disney movie, Beauty and the Beast.
At the end of 2016, Lauren was diagnosed with a Medulloblastoma tumor on her brain stem. Shortly after Lauren’s diagnosis, she had to endure brain surgery. Lauren’s mom feels blessed to be in the great caring hands of the Neurologists at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. "I was one of those people who always said things to other parents like, 'Oh, that's horrible...I'm so sorry...I wish I could do more for you.' But when it hits your own child, it sets you in a whole different perspective. It's so scary because you just never know what the outcome is going to be when they start talking about cancer. But then, there are blessings too. “Through his rough journey, God has placed many angels into our lives and they’re taking excellent care of us.”
Lauren is currently in the middle of her chemotherapy treatment plan. Her mom has learned how strong Lauren has become. "She's stronger than I thought she was. She doesn’t allow this cancer to define who she is, it is just something she has to do.” Lauren wants to continue going to school, which is something that keeps a feeling of control and normalcy in the air. Overall, the family's restructuring of their priorities was a necessary part of Lauren's diagnosis, and they have been grateful to the staff at Nationwide Children's Hospital for their helpfulness and total inclusion when it comes to decisions about Lauren's treatment. Her mom says, "The staff is phenomenal; people have wrapped their arms around us at every turn, in every area. The doctors make sure I'm informed along every step of the way, and they consider my input to be a valuable piece of the puzzle." That does a mom's heart good in a day-by-day, step-by-step experience.
Lauren's hopes are similar to other girls her age: she hopes to be able to hang out and dance with her friends, go to school, and, oh yes, bring that furry friend home. Her mom is all in. "She's a great kid. I couldn't make it without her smiles and giggles. "She's going to make a difference someday...I'm a lucky mom."