Ralphie Report: Jax pushes through another tough competition after ‘American Idol’
America came to know Jax as an energetic, talented singer who fought for her life against a handful of other contestants every week on the second-to-last season of “American Idol.”
More than a year separated from her time on the show, Jax once again finds herself in a battle; however this one has nothing to do with America’s vote. The singer, born Jaclyn Miskanic, is fighting Thyroid Cancer.
The discovery process started innocently enough; Jax was grocery shopping with her parents when she noticed an abnormal bump on her throat. She went to Urgent Care, who didn’t think much of it but prescribed her an ultrasound as a precaution.
“Then I went in for an ultrasound and they found 18 tumors on my thyroid,” the singer revealed to me. “They sent me to a thyroid specialist. During that, I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s disease.”
It was truly a light bulb moment for the 20-year-old, who had been battling bouts of depression and fatigue but was simply chalking it up to the rigors of the entertainment business. She took the diagnosis as a sign to slow down and take care of herself, but the show still had to go on. Jax was scheduled to headline a sold-out Webster Hall, her first major concert since the “Idol” tour wrapped. In dealing with these issues surrounding her throat, the singer was admittedly nervous for the gig, but judging by the fans’ reaction, the show was a massive success.
Then, the roller coaster continued. The hospital called with results from the biopsy on the tumors. Of the 18, 12 were cancerous.
“They ended up taking out (my thyroid) and three parathyroid (glands),” Jax explained of the procedure, which was performed right near her vocal chords. “It was a complicated surgery because the Hashimoto’s disease inflamed everything.”
Thankfully for the artist, her chords are still intact; she thinks she sounds a little more raspy but otherwise her voice was unaffected by the process.
Neither was her spirit. Yet still “radioactive” and not completely in the clear, Jax is deciding to battle this disease on her own terms; she has begun training for the New York City Marathon, which she’ll run this fall. Jax is raising money for Tuesday’s Children, “a response and recovery organization that supports youth, families and communities impacted by terrorism and traumatic loss.”
“Running has always been really therapeutic for me, just like the studio is,” she said. “I have a lot of new music coming out; we’re going to put it out right around the time of the marathon to get everybody kind of pumped.”
In the meantime, Jax is waking up early to improve her endurance, complete with custom-molded running shoes and a playlist that is pretty eclectic to say the least.
“I go from like The Beatles … to Kesha,” she dished. “I have some Karmin, The Lonely Island soundtrack, Muse, Twenty One Pilots. I even have some Jonas Brothers on there.”
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