Ovarian Cancer Survivor
May 31, 2000 started out innocent enough. I was undergoing surgery to remove a 17cm endometriosis tumor from my left ovary when my cancer was discovered. Not only found but it had burst open during its removal. The day after surgery, the surgeon came to my bed to let me know of his discovery. A week later, he phoned with the diagnosis I was dreading all along. It was ovarian cancer.
I was 34 years old, never been married, no children, taking care of my 72 year old mother, had a great paying job as a Store Manager and my whole life ahead of me. I began losing weight quite rapidly but, I thought it was due to the physical activity I exerted at work. I was tired more often which I attributed to work as well. I had been feeling out of whack for a couple of months and ignored what my body was telling me. If it hadn't been for the huge bump swelling up on the left side of my abdomen, I wouldn't have gone to the ER to find out what was wrong with me. That huge bump literally helped save my life.
Second look surgery was scheduled in to make sure the cancer hadn't spread to my other organs. As you can imagine, two surgeries within 3 months made my recovery time longer and more difficult than I had wanted but, you do what you have to do for survival’s sake. Concerns about its attachment to my uterus and colon led my Gyn/Onc to category me Stage I-C and to schedule me for 3 rounds of chemotherapy.
Needless to say, I got angry and I certainly blamed God, a lot. I wondered if it was worth fighting cancer when I had already lost so much - my job, my hair, my ability to have children, my pride. I felt sorry for myself and then it struck me. I was lucky.
I'm here today telling you my story because I was confident to go find out what was wrong with me! Something began to change in me and slowly but surely, things began looking up. All it took was a little faith.
Today, I'm 9 years cancer free, married to the most amazing man, have a wonderful job decorating cakes which I always wanted to do and 3 furry 'kids' that are the loves of my life. In a sense, cancer gave me new life and a fresh start.