How my story begins: I went to Planned Parenthood for my Pap test and received abnormal results. They tried doing a colposcopy but were unsuccessful in reaching the areas. They referred me to an oncologist.
Life before my diagnosis: I was a fairly social person and loved to go out with my friends. I had been out of college and working full time.
How I felt after diagnosis: I went to my appointment alone because I was convinced it wasn't anything too serious. The doctor and physician assistant told me I had cancer. I cried a lot and felt in denial.
Telling my family and friends: This was the hardest thing for me to do. I told my family and friends as quickly as I could. It was a really sad time as I lost an aunt to cancer just days before my own diagnosis.
My treatment: I went through six weeks of chemo and radiation as well as two weeks of internal radiation. I did not lose my hair the first time nor did I get super sick.
How I felt after treatment: I was glad it was over and felt very fortunate for my outcome!
What was most difficult for me: Going back after three months and there were spots in my lungs. I was diagnosed with a recurrence in February of 2016.
What I did to help myself: I had a couple of days to be sad and then I told myself this wasn't the way to live. My support system is the most amazing group of people I know and they still continue to show me the support I need today!
My life after cancer: I had a rough time between hospitalization for colitis and a job that was wearing me down.
Where I am today: I have a new job that I'm thrilled with and I'm 8 months happy, healthy, and in remission! My hair came back curly and I'm looking forward to my first haircut since treatment!
What I want other women to know: You are never, ever alone!
How I will try to help others: I'm a full time social work student and I plan on taking my degree to work in oncology social work. I want to be a therapist and help cancer patients and their families!