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Carle Cancer Institute Normal

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Survivor Story: My Journey to Ring the Bell

June 2, 2020
Charita Jeffrey
Survivor Story: My Journey to Ring the Bell

My Journey to Ring the Bell
Charita Jeffrey

For Charita Jeffrey, something just wasn’t feeling right. More unsettlingly, she had discovered a lump in her breast. So gathering up all her courage on the day after Christmas, Charita went for a biopsy.

Soon after, she heard those words that nobody wants to hear: “You have cancer.” Doctors had found a tumor the size of an egg. In the tense days that followed, Charita learned more about her condition and met the team who would help her decide on her treatment strategy.

EASING THE JOURNEY
“I was nervous coming into the Community Cancer Center at first,” says Charita. “But they did all they could to make me comfortable and calmed any fears that I had.”

That caring difference was shown in small, but important touches—like being addressed by name when she started as a new patient. Charita appreciated how her treatment team celebrated her victories—like that day she walked in all by herself—instead of being brought in by a wheelchair.

PATIENT SUPPORT SERVICES ASSISTS
Charita was unable to work during treatment. But assistance made possible by donations to Patient Support Services made sure her utilities stayed on and her car loan never missed a payment. She depleted her own funds, but the generosity of CCC donors helped her get through.

A BELL RINGS OUT
Charita’s best memory was made on the day she learned she was cancer-free. That was the day she rang the bell. Charita says she didn’t understand what the ringing of the bell meant until she rang it. “It didn’t hit me until I was out of the door that IT was done. I broke down in tears realizing it was over. Together, WE had done it.”

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Give Us A Call 309-451-8500

Operating Hours Mon – Fri 7:30 am - 5:00 pm