By Maycie Barker, Kaitlyn Clark, Dylan Outman, and Ella Stull,
Schoolcraft Sixth Graders
Cancer is a serious disease in which abnormal cells uncontrollably divide and destroy tissue in certain parts of the body. Paxton Green had this twice, and this is her story.
When she was just two years old, she had stage 2 rhabdomyosarcoma, and when she was 11, she had osteosarcoma. Rhabdomyosarcoma was in the soft tissue in her left tricep, and the osteosarcoma was in her right arm’s humerus, the upper arm bone.
Both times she had cancer, she was shocked and concerned. “When I found out I had cancer again after eight and a half years of being cancer free, I was shocked to say the least. It didn’t sink in right away until I was in the hospital undergoing my first treatment.” Paxton said. She just couldn’t believe it.
Along with cancer, there were many challenges that came with it. Her mom played basketball, and Paxton wanted to follow in her footsteps. But Paxton could not, for she was told she couldn’t participate in any contact sports after two intense surgeries. The first surgery involved an elbow replacement, and the second surgery involved replacing her humerus with a titanium rod.
Through all the negativity, there were also a lot of positives. Although she never thought she would, she fell in love with tennis. She played it from 7th grade through her senior year. Everything tried to bring her down, but she would just keep coming up. “In everything you do, whether it’s big or small, try to find a sliver of positivity. If you choose to approach things with hopefulness, you will find happiness.” says Paxton. Staying positive was a necessity in Paxton’s life.
Her supporters – friends, doctors, teachers and family – were shocked by her reappearing tumors. But her main supporters were definitely her parents. Both times when she was diagnosed with cancer, Paxton’s parents, Rod and Amy Green, were “in a state of shock”.
“We – her dad, Rod, and myself– were absolutely shocked when we found out that Paxton had cancer when she was just two years old,” her mom said.
We were really scared as we didn’t know anything about pediatric cancer, and we didn’t know she could survive.” Later on, when she was 11, her mom said, “This time she had another aggressive cancer, osteosarcoma. This was a bone cancer that was tough to beat.” As you can see, they had strong reactions.
At first, her proponents were scared just as much as Paxton was, but later on, they developed a sense of encouragement. “Trust in God that everything will be okay.” advised Paxton’s friend, Zoey Dubuisson, to Paxton. Motivation from Paxton’s friends and family helped her to stay motivated herself.
Paxton Green survived cancer twice, both at a very young age. Currently, she is attending Concordia University, where she’s studying to become a certified child life specialist. Through all the struggles, hardships, and challenges, she always chose optimism. She had many obstacles in her way, but that didn’t stop her from doing the things she loved most. “Negativity is easy to resort to. There is always light around the corner, even if that corner is a couple miles away.” To this day, Paxton is a strong believer in positivity, and in the end, many people will look up to her brave character.