Ruth recently shared her son’s tragic story of terminal illness on social media. An aggressive form of cancer slowly and brutally took over her son’s body until he passed away last February. She wanted to describe the terrible suffering he had to endure, but also his purity of heart and courage throughout his battle. Her story has garnered much sympathy online since then.
Two months after her 4 year old son passed away from cancer, Ruth Scully of Leonardtown, Maryland, posted a heartbreaking story describing her last days with her dear son. Ruth’s son Nolan passed away last February after a 15 month battle with Rhabdomyosarcoma, or RMS, a rare and aggressive form of cancer that attacks soft bone tissue in the body, and also becomes highly resistant to all forms of treatment.
Ruth wanted to share the grim reality of the cancer that claimed her son—each day advancing, crippling her son’s body one stage at a time. She shared a photo of Nolan sleeping on the bathroom floor shower mat, terrified to leave her side even while she took her shower.
Back in September 2015, Nolan had complained about a stuffy nose, and his parents thought it was just a cold at first. Soon, it became more difficult for him to breath, and meanwhile no treatment that they tried seemed to have any affect. That November, the doctor discovered that a tumor was actually causing the blockage in his nasal passages. It was a type of cancer that grows on muscles, fat, as well as joints. Patients may suffer drooping eyelids, headaches, nausea as well as difficulty urinating.
After several attempts at chemotherapy and radiation treatment, Nolan’s hair soon fell out, while his body began to feel weaker and weaker, as the cancer began to spread throughout his body. Typically, once the cancer had spread, the survival rate of patients falls to between 40 to 20%.
His mother wanted to share with the world those last few months with her son, describing how he “was made of nothing but pure love”.
Both Nolan’s father Jonathan and mother expressed how strong their boy was throughout his battle with the disease, while Ruth shared her own pain as, an “agony unlike any other”.
When she took Nolan to the hospital for the last time, after one year of fighting, the boy hadn’t eaten in days, since he was constantly vomiting. By February, the oncologist explained that the cancer had spread, and was restricting his bronchial tubes and heart after he had undergone open-chest surgery. The cancer had meanwhile become resistant to all forms of treatment.
“When I brought Nolan to the hospital for the last time,” Ruth shared on her post, “I knew there was something else wrong other than just a lingering case of C-DIFF. I just knew, and strange enough, I think he did too.”
“On February 1st we were sat down with his ENTIRE team. When his Oncologist spoke, I saw the pure pain in her eyes,” Ruth shared.
“She had always been honest with us and fought alongside of us the whole time, but his updated CT scan showed large tumors that grew compressing his bronchial tubes and heart within four weeks of his open chest surgery.”
“The Mestatic Alveolar Rhabdomyosarcoma was spreading like wild fire.”
“She explained at this time she didn’t feel his Cancer (sic) was treatable as it had become resistant to all treatment options we had tried and the plan would be to keep him comfortable as he was deteriorating rapidly.”
During one of the last times she spoke to her son, Ruth said to him that he “didn’t have to fight anymore”, and he replied that he would fight for her sake. She shared the heartbreaking conversation they had:
“[Ruth]: Honey … I can’t do that anymore here. The only way I can keep you safe is in Heaven. (My heart shattering)
“Nolan: Sooooo I’ll just go to Heaven and play until you get there! You’ll come right?”
Nolan slept for his last few days before passing away on February 4th. Ruth described the pain she felt having to sign the ‘Do Not Resuscitate’ order.
Afterward, Ruth set up a GoFundMe page in order to help pay for all of the medical expenses. So far, they have raised $50,000. She also shared her son’s battle in a touching tribute on Facebook, describing his as “a warrior who died with dignity and love”. Her story has since gone viral with over 611,000 shares.
Ruth alludes to her memory of her son sleeping on the shower mat on the bathroom floor.
“Now I’m the one terrified to shower,” she wrote. “With nothing but an empty shower rug now where once a beautiful perfect little boy laid waiting for his Mommy.”