- Associated Press - Monday, May 15, 2017

BOISE, Idaho (AP) - It has been seven months since Amanda Kofoed was diagnosed with cancer, six months since a video of friends surprising her with $13,000 in donations went viral, and one month since she finished chemotherapy.

Now the Nampa mom says life is slowly settling back into a normal routine.

Amanda Kofoed, a mother of four, is optimistic about her chances of fully recovering from Stage 3 Hodgkin Lymphoma, the Idaho Statesman reported (https://bit.ly/2qoQAkm).

In November, Kofoed, 30, and her husband, Clint Kofoed, thought they were filming a thank-you video at a local coffee house. At the time, Amanda Kofoed didn’t have health insurance, and the couple planned to use the video to show their appreciation to those who donated to a small GoFundMe campaign set up by a friend.

But a local group called the Praynksters, known for organizing flash mobs to commit random acts of kindness, had different plans. A line of more than 200 people streamed into the coffee shop, many dropping off $100 bills on the Kofoeds’ table as they walked by.

The video took off, and the Kofoeds were invited on a national television news network. The coffee shop ambush netted more than $13,000 in donations, and their online fundraiser took in more than $60,000 to help pay for cancer treatments.

Clint Kofoed said his wife “never wanted to look like she actually needed the help.” She struggled at first to understand the outpouring of support, he said.

Amanda Kofoed said she felt guilty and undeserving compared with others, and she remains humbled by the support. She’s trying to teach her kids to have the same charitable spirit that others have shown to the family, and she says the family is working on paying it forward - particularly for others fighting cancer.

“I tell (my kids) all the time to look at these people that poured out all this love to us, and what a blessing that is,” Amanda said. “I’ll say, ‘Look at how we can do this for somebody else,’ trying to turn what we’re receiving into something for other people.”

Amanda Kofoed was able to get on her husband’s insurance despite initial fears that it would be too expensive. She hopes to head back to school in the fall to finish her bachelor’s degree in education.

With her chemo treatments past, she views herself as lucky. She might need radiation to clear up “some questionable spots,” but she’s been able to give herself over to hope rather than fear.

“Everyone’s taking a deep breath like, OK, this is normal life for us,” Amanda said. “I feel very confident that it’s going to be OK, and I’m trying to live that way in front of my kids.”

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Information from: Idaho Statesman, https://www.idahostatesman.com

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