How my story begins: I went to have a regular Pap test and it came back abnormal. I then had a LEEP procedure. It was a Friday when I got a call from my OB nurse who told me that I needed to come into the office ASAP. I couldn't get anyone to take me, so I asked if I could come in on Monday and she said yes. I then asked what was going on and she told me she couldn't tell me over the phone because she didn't want to mess up my weekend. I begged her to tell me and I asked her if it was the C word. She said, "Unfortunately, yes." My heart dropped and I couldn't stop crying. The first person I called was my sister, then my mother. My family took it very hard. I couldn't sleep, eat or think.
On Monday, I was then referred to an Gynecologic Oncologist. I had to wait 2-1/2 weeks before she was able to see me. Once I met my new doctor, she did a exam and told me I was stage 2b and needed a pet scan and a CT scan to determine if the cancer was anywhere else. Got the good news that the cancer was only in one spot. I then started chemo right away for 6 weeks.
Life before my diagnosis: I was having other health issues, but I was doing well and had lost the weight that i needed to.
How I felt after diagnosis: Sick, couldn't sleep or eat.
Telling my family and friends: My family took it hard - 2 of my children broke down and cried. My mother tried to be strong but she had her days. My husband was very supportive, My grandmother prayed so hard for me. Other family members and friends were always there for me - phone calls, visits, always praying for me and showing me much support and love.
My treatment: 6 weeks of Chemo once a week, radiation for 6 weeks five days a week, and internal radiation once a week for 3 weeks. I went to all of my treatments alone. I didn't want anyone to make me feel worse than I already did. The doctors said I did really well. I didn't get sick as much as I had pain from the internal radiation. But I stayed focus on getting well and believing in Faith. I still was able to get around and out on most days. But I'm still so happy I found out when I did.
How I felt after treatment: Still felt a little sick for a few weeks but it got better.
What was most difficult for me: Internal radiation was so painful.
What I did to help myself: Try not to sleep as much, I watch my diet, and I took meds that were needed.
My life after cancer: My life is great. I continue doing things to enjoy life and my family.
Where I am today: Today I am doing much better. I went back to work full time and I am a first time grandma. I spend as much time as I can on my days off. I work as a home caregiver. I go to the doctor every six months but I am doing well.
What I want other women to know: Stay strong through it all. Listen to your doctors, stay positive and most of all, have faith.
How I will try to help others: By giving them as much advice as needed.