Iliana Bellard is a 10-year-old girl who was first diagnosed with Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma, an aggressive form of cancer that attacks the lymph nodes, in early 2018. Her mother recalls that it was stage 4 cancer at the time of the diagnosis and that the doctors put the girl on palliative care as they had little hope at that time. Starting from her shoulder and going to her heart, the girl had 7 tumors spread throughout her body. Even though the prognosis seemed grim, Iliana proved to be a true fighter.
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Iliana is a bright 10-year-old who’s fighting Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma, an aggressive form of cancer that attacks the lymph nodes
During her treatment, Iliana found that while stuffed animals, coloring books and board games eventually grew boring, one thing kept her entertained and distracted from the pain. Slime making became her thing and brought a smile back to her face. The girl’s family even started a fundraiser titled “Iliana’s Slimy Smiles” to raise money for “slime kits” which the girl could bring to other children going through therapy.
While Iliana is in remission, there are still some obstacles left in her path. To celebrate the girl feeling better, her mother, Eliabeth Bellard, wanted to take Illiana out for some quality mother-daughter time in the girl’s first public outing since chemo treatment, and what’s a better way to do that than getting a relaxing manicure? When the woman chose to go to “Imperial Salon and Day Spa” in Stafford, Virginia, she expected some well-deserved pampering for her daughter and herself, not to be irritated at the salon workers mistreating her daughter.
In an emotional Facebook post, Elizabeth revealed that while getting a manicure at the salon, some of the workers started making distasteful remarks about Illiana. The women kept saying that the girl recovering from cancer treatment looks like a boy. “When arriving at the salon the nail technician began to say how nasty Ilianas nails were because they were so brittle. At that point I explained that Iliana had just completed chemotherapy and that was the cause of her brittle nails. Towards the end of finishing her nails another nail tech walks up and says to the one sitting there that it looks like she is putting nails on a boy. She said Iliana looks like a boy and is going to look dumb with nails when everyone thinks she’s a boy.” Elizabeth told Bored Panda.
Elizabeth also posted a picture she snapped while it all was happening, saying that her daughter just laid her head down on the table while the work was being finished. The girl said that she felt embarrassed when the nail technician called her a boy. ” I explained to the manager again that Iliana had just finished chemo and that his staff was making fun of her. He at no point apologized but offered to draw something on Ilianas nails. Iliana declined and said she just wanted them to finish so we could leave.” the mother added.
After Beth’s Facebook post reached people’s feeds, many were outraged, calling the salon’s treatment of the little girl harsh and unbelievable. People also reached out to support Iliana and her mother which prompted the woman’s second post.
After the harsh criticism from the public, the salon’s representatives followed up with an online apology.
“We do not now, or ever support any of our employees making comments to any of our amazing clients. We value each and every one who walks into our spa. We deeply apologize that this has happened.”
There were reports that one employee was fired and other two suspended. Although the service made efforts to apologize in public, they did not send a personal apology to the family. “They have not reached out personally for an apology. They stated on their news interview that they would like to apologize face to face. We have not been contacted.” Elizabeth explained.