Nov 16th is the 4 year anniversary of my diagnosis. When I was diagnosed with stage 1B1 adenocarcinoma, I was 25 years old and married just a year. Today I am hit with such mixed emotions. It is a day that forever changed my life-both for the good and bad. I am saddened by what cancer stole me- my idea that I was healthy and somewhat invinsable and, of course, my feminine identity. Throughout my treatments I remained relatively healthy-looking to outsiders. By the time I returned to work I had regained a normal weight (I lost 20 lbs from my 115 lb frame) and never lost my hair. I always maintained a smile and tried to look energized and upbeat. Inside I was exhausted from all the radiation treatments and the weak muscles left by the hysterectomy procedure. Eating became a chore as the radiation left my intestines fried. Intamacy became painful, both physically and emotionally. I was devistated that I would never bare a child.
Each day the pain lessens, my strength improves, and the smile becomes more genuine.
Today I am reminded not only of the hardships I have faced, but of the battles I have overcome. I drummed up the courage and strength to persevere over this dreadful disease. I have a new sense of self and truly understand the definitions of family and friendship. For that I am thankful. For that I am proud.
Whatever stage of diagnosis or treatment you find yourself in, please know that the people on this website will always be here for you. Please know that even though we never asked for this, that we never wanted this, we will be stronger from this.
Keep up the good fight.
Thanks for listening.