Kaitlyn Mobley, 14, was diagnosed in September with Desmoplastic Small Round Blue Cell Tumor, also known as DSRCT. The Treasure Coast teen has already had three surgeries and multiple rounds of chemo, but she still has a tough battle ahead of her.
"The day before she was diagnosed we were celebrating my husband’s birthday and then the very next day our lives just, just changed," said mom Crystal Brown.
Kaitlyn says she was lying down and watching TV one night when she noticed a spot on her abdomen didn’t look right. She didn’t think much of it and it wasn’t causing her any pain so she waited a few days to ask her mom if it was something to be concerned about.
"I felt firmness at the lower part and told her no this isn’t normal. I asked her a series of questions before we went to the hospital," said Brown.
After a CAT scan and an ultrasound they were told Kaitlyn had two masses in her abdomen. They were referred to an Orlando hospital for further testing. It’s there she learned the tumors were cancerous.
"Like I’ll have my days where I’m just crying and like I’m just saying my teenage life has been ripped away from me," said Mobley.
Mobley has had to quickly transition from her freshmen year of high school to being home schooled, and spends hours each week traveling to Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children in Orlando for treatment.
"She encourages me no matter what, whatever news we get she’s like okay let’s just do it she’s always positive," said Brown.
Kaitlyn still has one more round of chemo to complete before the doctors at UNC in North Carolina can schedule her fourth and hopefully final surgery to remove the remaining cancer in her body.
"I don’t want people to say, 'Oh I’m so sorry.' Don’t be sorry, just smile because I’m smiling and you should just smile with me," said Mobley.
Coworkers of Kaitlyn’s mom are trying to help raise money for the family to get to North Carolina and stay by Kaitlyn’s side. They are selling pink bracelets, along with hosting a benefit night Feb. 20 at Chili’s in Jensen Beach.
“You know we don’t know how long they are going to be gone. Her mother of course won’t be working during that time and just to try and offset some travel expenses and medical expenses,” said coworker Kerri Daniels.
The family says there’s a lot of unknowns right now about further treatment and recovery because of the rarity of this cancer.
"It’s an aggressive cancer that they didn’t have a lot of research on even with the therapies that she’s getting," said Brown.
However, the family continues to stay positive and relies on each other, their faith and Kaitlyn’s future goals to get them through each day.
"I’m grateful that my daughter inquired to me, you know. about something that she felt and thought was abnormal," said Brown.
You can stop by Chili’s in Jensen Beach Feb. 20 and mention “Kaitlyn Strong” to donate 20 percent of your bill to Kaitlyn’s medical fund.
To contribute to her GoFundMe campaign, click here.
A benefit concert and basketball game is also being held March 1 and 2 in Fort Pierce to help the family with expenses.