I Got It from My Mama


I Got It from My Mama

May 23, 2018 | by Adriana Lombardo

I may never know what it is like to be a mom (as mentioned in my possible infertility post). Going through the hardships life brings you as a parent – injuries, illnesses, sudden diagnosis’ – isn’t easy, just like being the child and watching your parents try to stay strong through such challenging times while knowing they only break down behind closed doors isn’t easy.

From the moment I heard the words “You have cancer” she was there. All my treatment days, procedures, staying by my side while I curled up on the couch each and every day, she was there.

She was my rock through it all. She put a pause on everything else that was once considered important to her everyday life and took care of me night and day while my dad would work to provide for our family.

She never once complained. I never once heard her tell anyone that she was exhausted, although you saw it in her eyes. I learned a lot from her, but the most important thing that I learned from her is to stand tall when life literally knocks you off your feet. She always smiled to make sure I smiled. She cracked jokes – even when I wasn’t in the mood. She always knew what to say and what to do at the right time. She is a hero who isn’t given nearly enough recognition for her constant acts of kindness.  

Before I was sick, I always told people she was a stay-at-home mom when they asked if she worked. Never did I understand that that alone was a huge job which I never truly appreciated until I saw it day-in and day-out. She helped me bathe and sometimes even get dressed because of how sore I was while on steroids and just physically unable to do it myself.

She always introduced herself as, “Just Mom” when we met new nurses or team members. To them, she was a caregiver because she held my bags and jacket and went to get me food (more often than not). To me, she was a soldier fighting the toughest battle a parent could fight: watching their child go through cancer and not having any control over that. I can’t imagine that it was easy watching me day-in and day-out. She couldn’t help me because I was barely able to help myself. She found herself helpless in an uncontrollable situation, but she fought through it. She woke up each and every day and smiled. She woke up each and every day and did what she did best, be my MOM. If it was fixing my pillow or just sitting next to me in silence, she was able to be there.

I thank God each and every day that I was blessed with such an amazing woman in my life. I look up to her in ways no one can imagine. I know I will never even be half the woman she is because she is incredible, but I know that I will damn well try because I need to make her proud. She is my Mom.

With May being the month of celebrating Mothers (although it should be all year round), this blog is dedicated to the woman who held the table I leaned on for me during lumbar punctures; the woman who would run over to me while I threw up even when I wanted her nowhere near me; the woman who knew how not to treat me differently; the woman who kept it all together even when it felt impossible – I am PROUD to call her my Mom.

“I’ll love you forever; I’ll like you for always, as long as I’m living, my mommy you’ll be.”  


Adriana Lombardo

Life after Leukemia

I’m Adriana, a leukemia survivor who took sickness to fitness. After receiving a total left hip replacement upon completing treatment in 2017, I became a certified Personal Trainer Specialist. I now am a student at George Brown College studying Health & Fitness Promotion. Being a health & wellness enthusiast, I am passionate about helping people live a healthy and active lifestyle. My goal is to help cancer patients and survivors! I want to use my experience and my growing knowledge to share stories, post tips, healthy snack ideas and more. Going through treatment isn’t easy, and finishing treatment isn’t easier. Let me help you find your inner – and outer – strength.