On November 23rd, I got some good news: I'm in complete remission with no minimal residual disease! This will be the last episode of the podcast for now - so here are some closing thoughts and intentions going forward. I also sit down for a conversation with my boyfriend Hoku about what this experience was like for him as a primary support person during my illness. Thanks for following along with my story - it helped a lot to be able to share it with you.

The Gloomy Abyss

HCL patients are lucky in that most of us respond well to the available treatments, but there’s no denying that it’s a serious disease, and there have been points when it brought death and mortality to the front of my mind. I tend to have pretty interesting conversations about this stuff with my brother Art so I asked him to join me on the podcast today to chat about different ways of thinking about death. Excuse our rambling.


One Day at a Time

After a longish hiatus, here's One Day at a Time, a new episode that covers the remainder of the time I spent in DC for the first half of my treatment. There were days of fatigue and intense nausea, and days of fun with visiting family and friends. Days that I felt overwhelmed and days that I felt totally capable of handling this. Usually, the latter were because of the awesome people in my life.

Welcome to DC

On October 9th, we flew to Washington DC so that I could get treated at a clinical trial at the NIH. After a couple days of every kind of screening test imaginable, I was officially in the trial and could start treatment. This episode documents the first week of treatment, and my first trip to the nation's capital.

Diagnosis - Part II

I have decided to participate in a clinical trial at the National Institutes of Health in Washington DC, to receive a combination treatment with two drugs - Cladribine and Rituximab. Particularly for any other HCL patients out there, this might be a helpful, brief primer into how the two drugs work.

Diagnosis - Part I

My name is Anna, and in July 2016, I was diagnosed with hairy cell leukemia, a rare, slow-growing blood cancer of the B cells. During the past few months, I’ve kept notes on my day-to-day experiences and conversations. And now, as I get ready to start my treatment, I wanted to go back to tell the story of my diagnosis. My brother Haik helps to provide medical background and expertise.