Homecoming queen shares story of cancer fight
For Faith Earnhardt it’s been a busy senior year of high school. At Glenbrook, she’s a softball player, the class president for the fourth year, a member of the Sundancers dance line and she was voted by her peers to be Homecoming Queen. Faith has also been battling a cancerous tumor on her brain.
After consistent headaches and dizziness, faith had an MRI which showed the tumor.
“I’d be lying in bed and when I’d roll over, I’d get dizzy. It didn’t happen all of the time, it’d just randomly happen. Then it happened when I caught a ball on the field and when I turned left, I put myself on the ground because I started to get dizzy and couldn’t see. We thought it was vertigo or that I was just dehydrated,” Faith said.
The diagnosis of cancer came shortly after that on a trip to Memphis, Tennessee for surgery.
“I was glad to know that there was a diagnosis. I didn’t want it to be that, but I was glad to know what was going on,” Faith said.
Faith has visited St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital for treatment as well. She just finished radiation August 30.
“Right when I got back, I tried to do a lot. That wasn’t the best idea. The radiation side effects make me tired all of the time. When I came back I tried to go straight back into softball season, that didn’t exactly work out because I haven’t been feeling the greatest. I’m back on danceline this week but I’ve had to skip out on a couple of weeks because I haven’t been feeling the greatest,” Faith said.
Faith says her family, her school, and her community have been sources of support for her.
“Minden’s big into St. Jude so the community’s been a big support for me from the beginning,” Faith said.
Faith hopes to help others by using what she’s learned through this journey.
“I feel like I’ve been through a lot so I’m able to tell people about things like St. Jude. I know a lot about St. Jude now so I’ll be able to let people know about it to raise money for them,” Faith said.
Faith’s been trying to rest more but Homecoming week has been filled with responsibilities. She has been attending all of the Homecoming events while preparing to dance with the Sundancers at halftime.
The surgery removed the entire tumor and the radiation was used to get any cells that may have been left behind. Faith had a rare form of cancer called ependymoma.
“They can say that there’s no evidence of disease right now but they can’t say you’re cancer free because they can’t see if there’s any cancer cells that don’t show up on scans. They say the longer it doesn’t show up on scans, the less chance you have of it coming back,” Faith explained.