MTV reality star Diem Brown is fighting.
She's fighting cancer for the third time. She's fighting her chronic battle with pain. She's fighting to keep her weight above 100 lbs. And she's fighting people who want to give up on her.
"You can count me out all you want," she told People magazine, a week before her latest setback. "But I'm not out. I'm fighting. I want to be here."
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On Oct. 10, "The Challenge" star was hospitalized in New York for debilitating "unending" pain. There may be hope on the horizon, though. She was scheduled to undergo a procedure on Monday in which doctors insert a urine-drainage tube into her kidney in an effort to relieve persistent pain and swelling from various tumors and blockages.
Another problem for Diem is her weight. Weighing 100 lbs, she needs to gain 15 pounds before her next round of chemotherapy later this month.
Life and pain management have been an ongoing struggle for the past decade. Rather than continuing to take the same medication, though, Diem has taken a different path: medical marijuana.
It's working, she told the magazine.
"I asked my doctor about it, and I'll be totally honest - I had never smoked before in my life," she told People. "But I kept hearing everyone mention it. I'm taking all these synthetic drugs and they're not working, so I thought, 'I want to try it.' "
She continued, "I did the vaporizer and it took away the pain and I finally felt like I was able to eat," she said. "That's what got me a pound higher."
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Even though, Diem has had more setbacks than she cares to count, one thing that she refused to do is give up.
"I believe in power and positive thinking, I can see myself with a family, I can see myself getting married, I see all of these things," she said. "I've had one or two brief moments where I felt like my body was shutting down no matter what my mind was thinking, and I'm like, 'What the hell? Shut up!' You legit have to start fighting with yourself. You can't let your mind go there, ever."