In her exclusive one-on-one interview on The Buzz’s Sunday episode, Jackie Forster revealed to Boy Abunda that her daughter Caleigh’s Leukemia is currently on remission. “Medically speaking, she’s in remission and she still needs to go through two years of chemotherapy. But when we look at her we pray, when we talk about her, she’s cured.”
According to Jackie, Caleigh had fever that would not go away so she took her to the hospital for a check-up. “Nung una nilalagnat siya. It was on and off so we thought better to bring her to a specialist, someone who knows exactly, like a pediatrician. I was scared it would be dengue. So I took her to the pediatrician Monday. So the doctor told me, because she had her blood drawn, of course he knew the symptoms, feeling niya she might have Leukemia. I was even thinking ano yung Leukemia? Like, I’ve heard of it, it’s a sickness, oh it’s dengue right? In denial pa nga ako, so I have to have him explain to me and everything just started to unfold one by one after that,” the former actress explained.
Jackie also said that Caleigh is awared of her condition and that she prays with the family about her illness. “Yes. Siya pa nga ang nagdadasal para sa amin. Keep us safe, keep us healthy. She’s aware. She only learned of the word cancer recently, through her brother, but she doesn’t use it. But she calls what she has, ang tawag niya dun aliens.”
Jackie, who was involved in a controversy with her sons with ex-husband Benjie Paras, says people have judged her because of that and some even blamed her for her daughter’s sickness. “No matter what happens, I’m gonna fight this through with my head held high. Because I know people are gonna say, ‘ayan, ayan kasi.’ And when I pray about it, can’t the people keep bringing me down.’” She even said the people have been posting hurtful things on her Instagram account. “On my Instagram, I’ve had people say, it is my fault… because it’s karma.”
As a mother, Jackie’s only wish is for Caleigh to live a long, meaningful life. “That she just enjoy her life, a long and healthy life. I pray that she forgets all the pain. I don’t want her to remember…”
To share in her daughter’s hardship, Jackie also had her hair cut short when Caleigh’s hair started to fall out because of her chemotherapy sessions. “She was scared. Natatakot siya magtanong. Pero when she goes to the hospital, nakikita niya lahat sila magkakamukha. So she needed to eventually. So we did it medyo gradual. She mentioned she misses her long hair, when is my hair going to grow long? I thought that it was time for me to tell her.”
Jackie’s advice to those who are sick and families who are going through the same thing as her is to stay positive despite the hardship they are going through. She added that her daughter is returning that positiveness to her. “They just have to focus on the good. Do what you need to do so the person gets well. Most important is the person is happy, so make that person’s life happy. Caleigh, she’ll have chemo, any procedure, she’ll ask me the next day, she’ll have me open the windows and she’ll tell me to look out and see how beautiful the sunrise is. She paints for me, she’ll paint a boat with water, and the sky pink. ‘Caleigh, the sky is supposed to be blue.’ ‘No mom it’s pink and orange.’ I’ll say ok. Then days later, she said, ‘Mom, look out. See I told you so. She’s an angel.”