Yesterday, Adina died. She was only 45, diagnosed 5+ years ago. She leaves behind a great husband and 2 teenage daughters that need their mom. She fought like crazy to stay here. Her myeloma refused to allow that. Her story is a very difficult one. When she first fell ill, her doctor did not take her seriously. Sadly, this is very common, especially with women, and I’ve had this happen many times myself. Too many doctors try to blame stress or anxiety for women’s ailments. Her doctor did not run blood tests or do any real testing, to my knowledge, to rule out illnesses. Finally, I cannot remember if she went to the hospital or her doctor, but she told whichever that she was dying and she was not leaving until they found out what was wrong with her. She was right. She was dying. She was in renal failure and had to start dialysis. She was then diagnosed with myeloma. She was, understandably so, furious at her doctor, who just said, “we don’t expect to see myeloma in someone your age.”

For the next 5+ years, Adina fought like hell to stay here for her family and try to keep their family’s farm and finances solvent. But, like the truly amazing person she is, she also found a way to help others and make the world a better place. She started a myeloma support group in her area because there was none for folks like her and others fighting MM. With SO MUCH already on her plate, and while fighting for her own life, she found the time and energy to fill this need and give to others. That’s how this beautiful woman rolled. She always tried to make the world a better place. She jumped in and did what she could.

On Feb 1st, she posted on Facebook that she was stopping treatment. She was out of viable options and the new treatment worked for a very short time and then stopped. She was tired of feeling so sick from the drugs, not getting much help from them, and being stuck in the hospital instead of spending time with her family. These are the final words of that post:

“I wish you all the best, please go out in the world and make a difference, be a good person, live a life worth living.”

Adina did those things, but not nearly as long as she wanted and deserved to. If there is one thing I have seen, in the 13 years that I’ve been immersed in the world of myeloma, it’s that myeloma seems to choose the best people, the most giving people. It’s so damn unfair. Why can’t it land on the selfish jerks of the world? I know it sounds awful to say something like that. But, seeing the most awesome people live with this and be struck down in the prime of their lives is painful and doesn’t make one bit of sense.

Adina, you will never be forgotten. You made a difference.