KATC’s Katie Lopez got the chance to spend some time Annalisse Arnaud and as she shows us that with a little helping hand, anything is possible.
It’ll be a full year since Annalisse Arnaud has walked through the doors of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Nashville.
Her mother, Tara Arnaud, explains the moment doctors told Annalisse that they wouldn’t need to see her for three months after receiving maintenance chemo. "I cried and they told me that that was good," says Arnaud. "It meant that we didn’t need them. I told them I wanted them to tell me that she was okay every week."
It is that care and comfort of St. Jude Hospital that makes this grueling process easier for families across the United States.
"They make you feel at home and that you belong there, says Arnaud. "They really are family."
For Tara, it’s not just about the care they receive while at St. Jude that makes it all worthwhile. It’s also about the care they receive after all is said and done.
Annalisse has experienced hearing loss due to treatments, but Arnaud says St. Jude has stepped in to help her cope with that side effect. "They gave her helpers and in her class setting she wears them to help her hear," explains Arnaud. " The teacher wears a pin and is able to speak directly into that pin to project her voice into her ears directly."
Arnaud says that the helpers have allowed Annalisse to overcome her hearing obstacles.
Even going a step further into Annalisse’s future, St. Jude and her family are making sure that she has the opportunity to experience all that life has to offer.
"She wants to be a mom one day," explains Arnaud. "On our next visit, they will make sure that
if there is a chance that she can become a mom, to start harvesting her eggs if she has a depleted amount. Arnaud reiterates that it’s St. Jude’s continued commitment to their patients even after treatment that has left an impression on her. "They aren’t only concerned about during treatment and finding the cure and their numbers, they worry about you after as well."
As their rollercoaster ride starts to slow down, Tara says she will forever be grateful for St. Jude and what they’ve done to keep her family together.