Tuesday, October 16, 2012

The C Word

Almost interrupting, I said, "So... are you saying... I have cancer?"

"I'm saying that the pathology report shows the highest level of abnormality that the test will indicate. And the worst case scenario cause, of course, is cancer. We are doing a biopsy today to confirm those results. Paps can be wrong sometimes, but I want to prepare you for surgery."

She kept talking, explaining statistics and procedures. I was listening to her, but I lost my ability to hear the words. My body became weightless and my mind became clouded. My fingertips tingled, and that's the only thing that I remember feeling.

I left her office eerily calm, almost numb.  Brian met me at the door, eager to hear that we had nothing to worry about. I told him what Dr. Ricks' said - "test results", "surgery", "cancer".  My voice sounded completely different, like, I couldn't stand to say the words, so I let someone else do it for me.

We researched cervical cancer. As far as cancers go, it's a good one to have. It's slow growing and easily curable. But still, it's cancer. And cancer kills people.

Pfft, but I'm going to be just fine! WebMD said so. And on that day, I actually believed it.

But the next day was completely different. Fear made me irrational.

I didn't want to share my story publicly, even though I felt like I should. Just the thought of it made me feel nervous and exposed. I prayed about it and I bargained with God: 'What if I share it with my family? Or, how about my closest friends? Is that okay?'

But in my heart, I knew that I should reach farther, mostly because my story is different from the norm.

Emails started pouring in from women who shared their personal story with me, and many said that they made a preventive appointment after reading my blog.

If my experience helped just one person, it was worth it and then some.

So today, I don't feel nervous or exposed anymore. I feel honored and blessed. Thanks, God.

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  1. This is beautiful. Thanks for opening your heart and mind to us. Continued prayers.

  2. This reminds me of the day last year when I was five months pregnant with Maxwell. At my first ultrasound appointment, the radiology tech was spending way too much time looking for my left ovary. It was a mass. I was sent for a pregnant MRI and my docs discussed surgery. That was FU-N! They decided to wait until I has my C-section (thank God) and it was benign (again: thank God). So I know how you feel and almost exactly what you're going through. All that you can do is not to let the bad thoughts overwhelm you. Cancer is very scary, but I've known many that have kicked it's behind (I work in the cancer field). Cervical cancer rarely kills anyone these days. I'll be sending good thoughts your way...daily.

  3. You have choked me up and set me in motion for some heavy duty praying. Hugs. Ellen

  4. I had the worst kind of cervical cancer, and the surgery to remove it It was a tough road for a bit (I'd just had my daughter 3 months earlier) but I survived!!! And everything's good now. It's a quick and easy surgery :) thinking of you!

  5. Your bravery is a blessing, Amanda. Sending hugs your way. (What I'd really like to send you is chocolate, though, because COME ON, chocolate is always good to get, right?) And sending my prayers each day, as well.

  6. Girl, I am right where you are. I had an abnormal test (my first) come back 6 months ago. Two weeks ago, I had my follow-up visit and examination by a doctor. In between 6 months ago and 2 weeks ago, I worked myself into a state where I knew a) I had cancer, b) was going to die and c) leave my 4 year old motherless. My test samples were sent away 2 weeks ago and I haven't heard back....I'm not sure if this is because the results came back negative, or because they forgot to call either way like the doctor promised they would. Either way, I've been trying to make them forget I exist (like THAT'S going to help me). But I couldn't agree with you more about all the info you gave.....I heard most of it straight from the doc. And I can't thank you more for putting your concerns up here. It's like I was meant to see it.

  7. This post made me cry. I have a son and couldnt imagine leaving him for any reason at all. I had a little scare at one point with something similar to this before I had my son. Luckily it turned out to be alright. But I am praying for you and I thank you for sharing your story. You are an inspirational woman.

  8. so sorry. One of my best friends was diagnosed with a very aggressive & rare cervical cancer August 2011. It was a long road but she is doing great now! I cried every day for months. It's scary but you have lost of people keeping you and your family in their thoughts and prayers.

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  10. It's really a sad story, The post made me cry. But thank you for open your heart and show to me. My wife has same situation like your story. It makes me worry but your story inspire me so much. So thank you !.

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