Triumphant Warrior is a nonprofit organization dedicated to bringing joy to cancer patients across the United States through the gift of fun socks.
Triumphant Warrior fun socks start conversations, build relationships and create a community of support for the patient.
Life before cancer was great. Then while on a family vacation, I woke up coughing every night. The cough got worse, and once we got home I went to the doctor, not once but three times. On that third visit we did an x-ray, and that’s when I was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkins Diffused B-cell Lymphoma.
I had a mass in my chest that was 15x11x7 cm, so it was difficult to swallow food, breathing was a chore, and every time I tried to talk I would cough like a seal. By the time I was diagnosed, I was sleeping in a chair because when I laid down, the mass blocked my airway.
I went through six rounds of R-EPOCH, a chemo regimen where I had five days of chemo (with a take home chemo pack) and two weeks off. My BFF from high school sent me five pair of fun socks—a pair for each day of treatment. I wore them into the infusion room each day and posted pictures to my Caring Bridge site, which my family had named Triumphant Warrior. Before I knew it, family and friends were sending all kinds of inspiring, silly socks for my remaining treatments.
Infusion rooms are sterile, cold places, but wearing fun socks brought spirit and energy to those around me—patients, caregivers, and nurses. Putting on the socks was like pulling up armor against the beast...cancer. It brought joy and laughter into a stressful time. Once I realized how my fun socks impacted others, I would create my outfit for the day based on what socks I felt like wearing. People would ask to take pictures of my socks, share their stories or simply get a good giggle. Through the conversations, friendships were born, and I still keep in touch with many of those friends today.
I was in remission for 3.25 months before the cancer started growing again. This time, I went through an autologous stem cell transplant and radiation treatments at MD Anderson. I kept wearing my crazy socks even though I was afraid of looking like a big dork walking around the halls of such a large hospital. Luckily, the socks worked their magic and inspired even more friendships, laughter and joy that helped get me through my treatments.
I knew it was a joy I had to share with others, and I started giving silly socks to friends and friends of friends who had received a cancer diagnosis. I wanted to share that community of support, and give others that chance to smile (and keep their feet warm!) in the infusion room.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is my donation tax deductible?
YES! Triumphant Warrior is exempt from federal income tax under Internal Revenue Code (IRC) Section 501(c)3. Donors can deduct contributions they make to Triumphant Warrior under IRC Section 170.
Can I write a note with my socks?
We tried to work that out, but unfortunately, we can’t guarantee that the note will stay with the socks through the delivery process.
Do the patients get to choose their socks?
That’s up to our treatment center partners. You can trust that they do their best to match the socks to the patient.
I have a bunch of used fun socks I’d like to donate. Is that cool?
Thanks for offering, but we can only accept clean, new socks in their original packaging.
How fun should the socks be? What if I send boring socks?
While we encourage people to send in crazy, bright, happy, goofy socks, we like to think there’s a sock for every foot.
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