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Sally's passion for life is contagious. After being diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma she dedicated her infectious energy to motivating not only herself but also encouraging others to power through adversity and not give up hope or belief in themselves. Sally is a frequent talk-show guest, motivational speaker, cancer survivor, and now, an author. Her book Life Gets in the Way is due out by the end of 2020.

In 2008, Sally's life changed abruptly.  She was diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma, an incurable blood cancer. The situation intensified when 5 months after Sally's diagnosis, her husband was diagnosed with a genetic form of cancer. 8 months later, Pete passed away. At the age of 47, Sally had become widowed, was raising three kids, working full time, and living with multiple myeloma.

 

As a way to manage the stress, Sally started running up the stairs during her lunch break. This activity became more official as she transitioned into competitive stair climbing. She began channeling all of her energy raising money for charities with this new sport. Over the years Sally has raised over $110,000 for charities including the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF). All the while, rising in the rankings for the tower runs to 5th in the United States and 20th overall in the world. But as her rankings improved, her cancer worsened, and she needed to start treatment in 2016. After a year of treatment, Sally underwent an autologous stem cell transplant in 2017.

 

Facing Multiple Myeloma has not been easy for Sally, it has its ups and downs. Though Sally is currently in remission, cancer looms large in her life. She still takes chemo as a maintenance therapy, and since her husband’s cancer was genetic, she worries about her kids needing to fight battles of their own.  Her resiliency and tenacious spirit powers her through all of this uncertainty and help her to spread positivity and hope to others dealing with similar challenges.

©2020 Sally Kalksma Greater New York Area, United States.

sjkalksma@gmail.com
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