Double Bone Marrow Transplant Survivor Alyssa Phillips Featured in Real Simple Magazine’s December 2011 Cover Story—Surviving Tough Times

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Alyssa Phillips, a 34 year old runner, Physician Assistant and Double Bone Marrow Transplant Survivor, tells how she overcame a less than 5 percent chance of survival and the Christmas she'll never forget in Real Simple’s holiday issue.

Double Bone Marrow Transplant Survivor Alyssa Phillips

"When you've known suffering and turned it around, it just feels right to reach out and help others. And I want people to know that, no matter what it looks like, Something beautiful is happening™."

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In the December 2011 edition of Real Simple Magazine, 34 year old runner, Physician Assistant and Double Bone Marrow Transplant Survivor Alyssa Phillips is featured in the cover story "Surviving Tough Times: The Holiday I'll Never Forget". Diagnosed with Stage IV Large-Cell Neuroendocrine Cervical Cancer—one of the rarest and most aggressive types of cancer known—just six weeks after running her best time in a half-marathon, Phillips went from the prime of her life to the fight of her life overnight when she was given a less than five percent chance of survival. The practitioner, now the patient, found herself in the Bone Marrow Unit of an Atlanta hospital (the same one where she had worked for the previous six years) over Christmas 2008 willing herself to stay positive as she fought to survive.

At age 31 and planing for a family of her own, Alyssa was instead facing a radical hysterectomy, multiple rounds of aggressive chemotherapy and two back-to-back bone marrow transplants—just five weeks apart—due to her dire diagnosis. And the blow of her hopeless situation was compounded by the previous death of her younger sister, Lauren, just a decade earlier.

Desperately trying to navigate uncharted waters, Alyssa realized she must summon courage she didn't know she had and leverage her determination from years of running, along with her degrees in nutrition and medicine, if she was to survive. Diving into meditations, visualizations, affirmations, nutraceuticals, prayer and laughter, Alyssa willed herself to stay positive and threw everything she could into turning her situation around—including power-walking in the Bone Marrow Unit of the hospital everyday. Christmas of 2008 marked her second bone marrow transplant treatment and threatened to be a low point for Alyssa. But instead, she chose to see the challenges she was facing as veiled lessons and gifts used to break her in beautiful ways into the person she was always meant to become.

Now happier and healthier than ever before—and running again—Alyssa reaches out to help others with what she's been through, inspiring them to look at the challenges of their own lives in bold new ways and also helping to raise awareness of the cutting-edge, yet basically unknown, treatment protocol that helped save her life. "When you've known suffering and turned it around, it just feels right to reach out and help others. And I want people to know that, no matter what it looks like, Something beautiful is happening™."

About Alyssa

Alyssa Phillips is a Physician Assistant & Double Bone Marrow Transplant Survivor turned Inspiring Writer & Speaker. She has also recently been featured in CURE Magazine, regularly speaks to other cancer patients and is an avid traveler. Alyssa is currently writing her first book, a memoir based on her pivotal cancer journey, the blogs she shared while on house isolation for almost a year during her treatments and how she turned a less than five percent chance of survival into a beautiful new beginning.

To contact Alyssa, learn more about her story and mission, see photos, videos and more, please visit her website at http://www.alyssaphillipsinc.com or email her at alyssa(at)alyssaphillipsinc(dot)com.

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Alyssa Phillips
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