What appeared to be flu-like symptoms and a bladder infection turned into something far greater for Madalynn Snow and her parents, Kelly and Libby. After multiple clinic visits, Maddy's parents found a large lump on the right side of Maddy's stomach. The following CT scans revealed a softball-sized tumor in Maddy's kidney. She was diagnosed with Stage 4 diffused anapestic Wilms' tumor, the most aggressive type of this rare cancer.
"It was overwhelming, and I experienced a level of fear and anger you can't put into words," said Libby. "You don't want to believe it's happening to you."
After being diagnosed, Maddy began chemotherapy treatments. This past July, Maddy finished 41 weeks of chemotherapy, now moving into the maintenance phase of routines lab checks. Throughout everything, Maddy hasn't let cancer define her.
"She understands life in ways a 7-year-old shouldn't have to, but at the same time, it's enlightening to see her perspective on things."
Maddy has a Facebook page to keep her supporters informed on her progress. Five thousand people strong, Maddy's Facebook following loves seeing how she keeps a smile on her face despite treatments and appointments.
"Maddy has faced the hardest, most challenging days a child should have to face, and each day, she wakes up ready to take on the world," said Libby.
A second-grader this year, Maddy enjoys school and reading, in between her other hobbies, gymnastics, dance and music. Her outgoing personality demonstrates how her spirit hasn't wavered throughout her battle.
"This process has opened my eyes to what is truly important in life - love, support and kindness," said Libby. "I will never take the small things for granted."