HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- With September being Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, the Houston Astros will have a special guest kickoff the organization's Childhood Cancer Awareness Week.
Clear Creek High School junior and cancer survivor Sophia Sereni will sing the National Anthem prior to Monday's game.
Before her 13th birthday, Sereni was diagnosed with T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia.
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"You never think it's going to be you," Sereni said. "But once it happens, you realize how many people are affected by it and that you have to keep the faith and stay strong."
A month after chemotherapy at Texas Children's Hospital, Sereni's cancer was in remission, but she still had a long road ahead of her.
When she was diagnosed, Sereni was forced to take a leave of absence from school due to the potential health risks on her immune system during treatment. After missing nearly her entire 8th grade year, she was finally able to return.
Now a junior at Clear Creek High School, Sereni reflects on her time through treatment and recovery, while battling the normal trials of being a teenager.
"It was really tough going through that because I wanted to see my friends," Sereni said. "Middle school is an important time and I didn't get to be a part of that. So, it was weird transitioning into high school after only going to a small part of 8th grade."
After enrolling at Clear Creek, Sereni became a member of the school's choir her freshman year, and eventually made the TMEA All-State Treble Choir as a sophomore.
Now two and a half years after her treatment, Sereni can celebrate her victory over cancer.
"It's been a rough but amazing journey," Sereni said. "I've gotten so many blessings through this time and I just have to thank God and my friends and family."
High school cancer survivor to sing the National Anthem at Astros game