May 5, 2017
Four-year-old Aria Dryer is fearless.
She loves to dance and is fascinated with birds. Aria was so proud of her long, curly blond hair — then cancer changed her life.
Aria’s mom, Lacey, once thought it was a chore to comb through her golden locks. But a month into Aria’s chemo treatments for cancer, the tedious detangling became a reality check.
One night, after her daily bath, lotion and jammies, Lacey started to gently brush Aria’s hair right into her hands. Hair strands caked the tub, layered the floor and stuck to Aria’s body.
“That’s when it hit me,” Lacey remembers. “As this hair kept streaming out of her head, getting all over her and me and coming out in piles, you could see her scalp clearly on top. The lump in my throat formed … this cancer is REAL and I lost it.”
A Family Affair
Fortunately, Aria has an amazing support system around her, starting with her family. Once Aria’s hair started to fall out, her parents shaved their heads, too!
“I wanted to let Aria see that she’s not alone,” Lacey said. “Nothing she does in this is alone and I make sure of that.”
Aria also has the support of her team at Sanford Children’s. Lacey says they are especially thankful for Aria’s pediatric oncologist, Dr. Sam Milanovich.
“He’s so friendly and he keeps everything low-key,” Lacey said. “He doesn’t really get all hyped up about things. He might say this could go wrong or this could happen, but says, ‘Just call me if it does.’”
Above all, Aria and her family are in good hands thanks to generous support for Cure Kids Cancer at Sanford Children’s. Gifts to Cure Kids Cancer are used to purchase state-of-the-art equipment, expand programs, further research, and offer direct family assistance. Gifts ensure sure kids receive the best care, close to home.
Help make more stories like Aria’s possible. Make a gift to Cure Kids Cancer today.