'SNL' Alum Vanessa Bayer Says This Was Her First Cancer Symptom

During her seven seasons on Saturday Night Live (SNL), Vanessa Bayer became known for her hilarious sketch comedy roles as child actress Laura Parsons

At the age of 15, she was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia, a form of cancer that affects the blood and bone marrow.

Bayer says that it was over spring break during her ninth grade year that she first started having "flu-like symptoms and a swollen eye."

For Bayer and her family, it turned out that laughter truly was the best medicine. "It's so therapeutic to laugh," the comedian told Coping Magazine in 2019.

"I think having cancer has definitely shaped my comedy because I found so many ways and reasons to laugh while I was sick, and it really gave me a stronger comedic point of view."

Besides impacting her choice of career, Bayer says that having cancer also shaped her as a person—perhaps more so because she was a teen at the time of her diagnosis.

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