BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — Happening this week, the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Light the Night community gathering at Railroad Park to honor those impacted by blood cancers. Today CBS42 is highlighting one little boy from Trussville who’s battled leukemia twice.
At Children’s of Alabama, nine-year-old Nolan Trowbridge battled and beat leukemia twice over the last six years. According to the U.S. News and World Report, Children’s is nationally ranked in eight pediatric specialties, including cancer.
Nolan’s parents, Stuart and Barret Trowbridge, told CBS42 he is a fun, energetic little boy who loves to play. Nolan tells me he loves baseball and basketball the most.
When they witnessed their son becoming consistently ill with high fevers and significant bruising at just three-years-old, they were alarmed.
They tell me Nolan’s symptoms never faded, but after being dismissed multiple times by various walk in clinics, they demanded blood work.
That’s when Nolan was officially diagnosed with Pre-B cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. According to the American Cancer Society, Leukemias are the most common childhood cancers which includes ALL.
This diagnosis was crucial for following through with lifesaving treatment at Childrens of Alabama.
“He was getting sick on the weekend, so it wasn’t his pediatrician that missed this,” said Barret Trowbridge, Nolan’s mom. “It was just going to after-hours clinics, but his oncologist said, you know, for most people cancer is not the first thing in their mind. That’s not what people are looking for. So, just being aware of the warning signs and just for peace of mind, getting checked out. It may be nothing, but just so that you can know for sure.”
Trowbridge said Nolan’s treatment led to swelling, hair loss, exhaustion and nausea. Emotionally, Nolan became anxious and is just now overcoming the selective mutism he developed while battling cancer so young.
“We’ve just learned how resilient kids are because, I mean, the things we’ve had to put him through I truly don’t know that I could have done. I tell him all the time that he’s our hero, and like I said, he made it look easy, but we know it wasn’t and we know all the things that he’s been through.”
After conquering leukemia twice, Nolan is now in remission. His chemo port was finally removed in June. He loves playing with his little brother, Sutton, and making new friends at school.
Nolan and his family said they are grateful for all the care, support and prayers he has received throughout his fight. They added he is finally getting a real taste of what it’s like to enjoy life with family and friends.
They also added that you can never go back after becoming a cancer parent or patient. There will always be fear of it returning, but they hope his story will inspire others by how they choose to live in the present.
Nolan’s journey with cancer is something his family says they never saw coming. That’s why they say he’s a living testimony that shows how important it is to show support and raise awareness.
“Even if it doesn’t personally affect you, it’s so important because it could affect a loved one or a friend or a neighbor and even if not, all these kids that are going through this need cures they need better treatments that aren’t so harsh on them,” said Trowbridge. So, everybody needs to get involved and I think that’s our biggest thing now is just even if it doesn’t personally impact you these kids deserve that.”
To learn more about how you can show support for children like Nolan and families like his you can click here.