Roman Reigns on Making It to WrestleMania 35 After Leukemia Battle, His Support System, More


Roman Reigns recently spoke with The Undefeated and said he’s super-proud to be a part of the WrestleMania 35 card. Reigns said his return to the WWE ring came just 127 days after his leukemia announcement on RAW in late October, but he wasn’t sure it would happen so quickly. The quick return was called a miracle in itself.

“I didn’t know if I was going to have a match,” Reigns said. “I didn’t know if I was going to be on the catering squad or what. I didn’t know if I’d just be enjoying it with the rest of the universe. But the fact that I’m in [WrestleMania], the fact that I’m part of it, makes me superproud, and I just want to take advantage of it and knock this one out of the park.”

Reigns revealed that when he was diagnosed with leukemia this second time back in 2018, doctors discovered an enlarged spleen and they knew exactly what was happening. Leukemia begins in a cell in the bone marrow and over time, the infected cells can suppress the production of normal cells. A healthy adult should have a white blood cell count of between 4,000 and 11,000, but Reigns had a white blood cell count of well over 100,000 and that caused concern.

“That was the immediate physical scare of having to get me out of the ring,” Reigns said. “With a ruptured spleen, it’s obviously going to be a major operation, but people can die from it. It was a situation we didn’t want to put ourselves in, no matter how hardheaded I can be.”

Reigns knew then that he would have to step back from his in-ring career to focus on his health, and that’s when he relinquished the WWE Universal Title on RAW. Reigns was immediately showered with prayers, wishes for a speedy recovery and positive messages. He said he’s still struggling to deal with what came along with making his leukemia battle public.

“There’s still things I deal with on a day-to-day process,” Reigns said. “It’s still weird to meet strangers and they’re like, ‘How are you feeling?’ It’s like an immediate sympathy for me. That’s something I didn’t want, the part I don’t like, because I don’t want people to feel worried for me or feel sorry for me. It’s all coming out of a good place, but it’s one of those deals that I’m still struggling with, my health being so public and that’s the first thing people think or know about you. For me, I just want to get back to where I’m leading a pretty normal life and I’m just doing the things that I love and getting the recognition for the things I was getting recognition for before this.”

Reigns hopes to do that by showcasing his strength in the ring and by using his public battle to help raise awareness for other people going through similar situations. He’s taking things slowly and living day to day, but it was noted that he is not shying away from his match on the biggest show of the year. Reigns will be facing Drew McIntyre at WrestleMania 35. He’s currently focused on preparing for that match, but it was noted that he is constantly reminded that none of this would be possible without that wide-reaching support system that he had to get used to.

“There’s a goal at hand, and when I achieve it, we all achieve it,” Reigns said. “I’m not just gonna check this box off by myself. Everybody that was with me, everybody that was supporting me, when they see me walk down that ramp at WrestleMania, they know that miracles can happen. They’ll know that support system is true, and when people have the comfort of loved ones and those sending blessings to them, they can achieve anything. I just want people to know that’s what I feel like. The fact that I’m participating speaks volumes for me, and I hope people who see that know that came from the love and the blessings that they sent to me. That didn’t happen for no reason. It happened because God heard a huge outpouring of prayers, and I firmly believe that.”

You can check out the full interview at this link.

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