SALT LAKE CITY — What started first as a misdiagnosis is now one woman's fight for her life.
"This is the hardest thing I have done in my life," said Tricia Parkinson Glenn from her Sugar House home Wednesday.
She's not afraid of a battle. After all, she served as a lawyer in both the U.S. attorney's office and the district attorney's office. But it's a different kind of battle that's got her a little nervous.
"It is invasive ductal carcinoma," she said.
It's a particularly aggressive form of breast cancer. Parkinson Glenn is at the beginning of 16 month chemotherapy regimen.
"Chemo is horrible," she said. "It's almost worse than the cancer."
Wednesday was her first day home from the hospital in a week, but there was no time to rest, because she has three little boys who need all of her. They are 3-year-old triplet sons, George, Edison and Parker.
"Lots of women have breast cancer and lots of woman have children with cerebral palsy and autism," she said. "It just so happens I have all of the above at the same time."
Edison has cerebral palsy and epilepsy, and he relies on a wheelchair to get around. Before Parkinson Glenn's diagnosis, the family was planning to remodel its home to make it more wheelchair-accessible. Now those plans are on hold.
Lots of women have breast cancer and lots of woman have children with cerebral palsy and autism, it just so happens I have all of the above at the same time.
–Tricia Parkinson Glenn
George is autistic and needs intensive therapy.
"(Parker) is normal," she said with a laugh. "If there is such a thing as normal."
What's not normal is the mounting medical bills from both her and her childrens' treatments. Her husband is self-employed, and insurance only covers a portion of the boys' therapies.
"The bill are just stacking up," she said.
But she's not taking on this battle alone. Friends and strangers are planning to fight alongside her. They've set up a GoFundMe* page, planned fundraisers and helped out with the boys. On Saturday, a neighbor will be offering lawn-aeration services and donating the money to the family.
"They just take off and they do it," she said of the people helping out. "It's just so amazing. We're so grateful."
Despite all she's facing, Parkinson Glenn is still smiling and quick with a laugh as she takes on her toughest opponent yet. She's said she is grateful for the support of her community.
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