My name is Sherry Hall, and I was diagnosed with stage 4 follicular lymphoma in February 2013. At the first cancer facility I was sent to, I did six rounds of R-CHOP chemotherapy, and after a couple of months, I was not getting any better. My cousin had reached out to me when she learned that I had cancer, as did her husband, about the place they were going and the doctor whom they loved. I met with Dr. Scott Tetreault and he got me started on a clinical trial that was great for almost a year. From the moment I walked in the door, the staff were wonderful.
I met Ms. Linda and there was an immediate bond between us. All the nurses are wonderful and caring, but there was something about Ms. Linda that really made me feel like family. She was very attentive to me, as well as to the other patients. She would take her time with each of us, never in a rush, sometimes sharing stories about her life. She always inquired what the doctor had said and was very careful in explaining the medications that I would be receiving; each time she brought one out, she would tell me what it was and how long it would take to receive it. She would ask if I needed a blanket, food or something to drink. She is the very epitome of what I feel a nurse should be: caring and making you feel hopeful. I have never seen her in a bad mood; she’s always been energetic and friendly. She has a very watchful eye, and if something looks amiss, she is right on top of it.
One time, I had a doctor’s appointment and wasn’t sure that I would make it. I didn’t feel strong enough to even walk, but I did make it. The nurses, along with Ms. Linda, gave me antibiotics and fluids and kept watching me carefully. Ms. Linda would come over and just stare at me like she was looking through to my soul. I told her she reminded me of a teacher and me a student unable to lie to her. She simply replied, “That’s a mother’s love.” And that is how she is to all of her patients. There are usually 20-plus patients at a time and she treats us all the same, yet, somehow, she has made me feel very special. She knows all the patients by name and even remembers tidbits of our histories, the stories we have told her and our families.
She has been a nurse for 40 plus years and will be retiring in 2019, and I am going to miss her tremendously. She has had a huge impact on my life. It will not be the same walking in and knowing that she is not going to be my nurse, but I am grateful that I was allowed the opportunity to be treated by this wonderful lady who is always so full of life. If anyone deserves an award for outstanding service in the field of nursing, she certainly should be at the top.