Adriana Smiling Through


Adriana was in the middle of her senior year at Colonie Central High School when she was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid leukemia on February 5, 2016. She needed a bone marrow transplant, but her immediate family was not a match. She ended up with a 9/10 match from Germany. Adriana had to endure three rounds of chemotherapy. The first one was very hard on her and she had many setbacks, but she endured.

On June 12, one week prior to making the trip for her transplant, Adriana graduated from high school with her whole family watching. On June 22, she was admitted into Strong Memorial Hospital where she would endure what doctors warned would be the most aggressive chemotherapy that would knock her on her butt. Her strength and positive personality helped her through this round.

June 28 was transplant day. Adriana knew she would be all right as it was also her grandmother’s birthday. Her grandmother is a breast cancer survivor, so there are some strong women in this family. Adriana did so well, she was released a week earlier than most patients. Today Adriana is healthy and not having any issues.

Adriana’s mom believes that her strength and determination helped her through. She never showed a moment of sadness. In addition, her sense of humor not only helped Adriana deal with her illness, but it helped everyone else.

This quote from Adriana during her transplant shows her positive attitude:

“So I think it’s finally time to post this and yes with a filter, but I’m still bald and I’m proud. Leukemia is really no joke, yeah at times it’s scary, but I deal with that through humor and who I am as a person. I may say it hasn’t hit me that I have cancer yet, but secretly it has. You don’t know what’s gunna happen, sometimes it’s tough with all these little and even bigger problems but sometimes it does get easy…Now sitting here in Rochester anticipating this bone marrow that will be placed in me on the 28th is kind of nerve racking, because I just want it done and over with. With that also comes it’s own problems, but I’m now strong enough to face them and I’m not a bit scared.

Adriana uses humor and expression to help her deal with her diagnosis. She said that she is strong enough to get through this. Digging deep and knowing what coping mechanisms work for her is important. She knows that by getting through the toughest chemo, she can get through anything. It changes you inside and out.

I’m impressed and inspired by her frankness and her strength. And with that beautiful smile, you know she laughs a lot, which is the best healer!


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