This is our dear friend Denise. She’s 31 years old, sweet, caring, thoughtful, and always there for the people she loves. While she’s one of the smartest in our group, she also manages to make those around her laugh and smile especially when they need it the most. She’s always ready to give, be it rain or shine.
While she’s always tried to savor the joys of life, she has also gone through so much. At an early age, she lost her dad. Later on, her mom’s breast cancer recurred and to this day, she helps her mom cope with battling cancer. Since then, being the only child, she has served as her mom’s pillar of strength. She has worked hard ever since to support herself financially since her mom’s condition meant limited means of work and income for their household.
But then, life threw her another curve ball. Last November 2019, she herself was diagnosed with Stage 1 breast cancer. With her tough fighting spirit, she braved on, choosing to be strong for both her and her mom as they battled cancer together. She changed her lifestyle for the better, went through needed surgery and medication she could manage from her limited means, with whatever she could.
As if the pandemic wasn’t enough, she found out last March 2021 that the cancer has gotten worse, despite her best efforts to fight it. The cancer has reached stage 4 and metastasized to her lungs. With so much dreams, goals and aspirations in life, hearing this is not something one would ever be prepared for.
She started questioning her life’s purpose: Why was this happening to her? How can she sustain everything financially? Was she really meant to continue living? Seeing the struggle her mom has been going through in battling cancer to this day, she questioned if she still wanted to fight and put herself through that of the same ordeal.
With a lot of love, support and encouragement from loved ones and friends, she found HOPE. She managed to remember the beauty of living through the simplest of things: from chasing sunsets, to going on road trips, to random conversations with friends. She started to find that life’s meaning was more than fearing the uncertain; but about living each day at a time. This is when she chose to continue fighting for her life, despite the challenging road ahead.
After the first cycle of treatment was done, she thought the battle would soon be over. Unfortunately, her latest CT scan showed that the while the past nodules shrunk, two new nodules in her lungs have appeared. This meant that she has to go through a second line of treatment.
The best treatment she will need is Kadcyla, which will cost around Php 200,000 per session, every 3 weeks. On top of this are other medical expenses such as endless tests and PET/CT scans.
While all of this has taken a such big toll on her physically, mentally, and emotionally, a large part of her struggle is finding the financial means to go on. Even with her close friends’ contributions, what they initially thought would be enough, doesn’t suffice anymore. With so much resilience, she is determined to fight, but challenged by the reality if she can continue to afford to.
Denise has always been the one with the big heart. She makes everyone around her happy, just being herself. We know that she can still spread so much love and happiness into this world, and we don’t want to lose our friend just because of financial constraints.
Thus, we are humbly appealing to your good hearts, and seeking your help in funding her succeeding treatment. Your support will mean a lot to Denise during this most challenging time as she continues fighting for her life. Whether big or small, it will go a long way.
It will be her 32nd birthday this June 10, and we pray that she gets to have many more birthdays to come. We hope you can help us save her life.
For those who want to help, it’s best to send directly to any of Denise’s bank accounts below:
BDO Savings Account
Account Name: Denise Pauleen L. Cortes
Account Number: 000661461572
Account Name: Denise Pauleen Cortes Account Number: 3309031503
For those who are currently not in the PH, you may donate through this page by clicking “donate” button.
Thank you very much!