Though born in Brooklyn, New York, Cax.Me’s childhood was spent in rural Haiti. In a home perched high on a mountain, overlooking the ocean, Cax.Me had a near idyllic childhood, even in a country stricken with poverty and corruption. But when she was just fourteen, her carefree youth was rocked. While innocently playing hide and seek with friends, she fell to the ground in excruciating pain. Haitian doctors misdiagnosed her with an abscess, but her mother had the foresight to seek out a second opinion from experts in the States. It was February 25, 2005, when Cax.Me was told that she suffered from Osteosarcoma, an aggressive form of bone cancer which had already metastasized to her lungs. At the time she didn’t know that she was given only three weeks to live, years later her mother would tell her this horrifying news.
Even though Cax.Me spent summers in the U.S., she barely spoke English, giving her a limited understanding of her medical condition.
“As a teenager, I didn’t know what cancer was. My only reference point was stories of friends’ family members who had died from the disease.”
Cax.Me says that a few things got her through this immeasurably challenging time.
“For one, primal instinct dictates wanting to survive. As a human being, you just do everything you can,” she says. “The support from family members – my sisters – and all the people around me, were an enormous motivator. And lastly, my curiosity, and the adventurous person in me powered through. I always wondered where I would be in five years and thought about all the things I wanted to accomplish.”
Cax.Me also began experimenting with her style. For as long as she can remember, her goal had been to sport a prosthetic leg that was as human looking as possible. But when she had a change of heart and decided that she didn’t want to hide her disability, she chose a basic metal piece that ultimately garnered pity from passers-by. She knew that neither choice represented her true sense of self. Over Instagram she discovered ALLELES a Canadian company that creates intricately designed prosthetics that can be personalized by the wearer (a stand-out style depicts beautiful, artful scrolls). Now owning seven different ALLELES covers, Cax.Me says that her prosthetic legs serves as part of her self-expression. Her interaction with people has changed as well as random strangers aren’t throwing “God Bless” her way anymore. In fact, people have been known to come up to her and tell her how “badass” her leg covers are.
This is awesome! What an inspiration to people suffering physical challenges or any challenge for that matter. Cax.Me you are so cool!!!! THANK YOU for sharing your incredible story!!! Love you style!! xo
Cax.Me’s story is beyond inspiring. The fact that she didn’t let the loss of her amputation dictate her life is amazing. She is so confident and stylish too!!! You rock Cax.Me!!! <333
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