It seems like just the other day. On December 1, 2014, it seemed like my world was coming to an end. On that day, I was diagnosed with colon cancer after a colonoscopy showed a malignant tumor in the sigmoid section of the colon. I felt numb, angry and confused. Earlier, when I had begun to exhibit signs that something was wrong, I prayed to God that it not be cancer. At that moment I thought God had abandoned me. In fact, though, nothing could have been further from the truth.
How could I have cancer? Well, at the time, I was 57 years old and I had kept delaying my first colonoscopy. That could have prevented this from ever happening. I am now the biggest advocate for getting a colonoscopy at age 50 or earlier. Don’t wait!
After my tumor was detected, I had surgery a week later where they found that it was in fact stage III colon cancer having spread to four lymph nodes. They removed about a foot of the colon and 21 lymph nodes. My oncologist warned that without chemotherapy treatments, I had less than a 50% chance of survival. With treatments, my chance would increase to 70+%. I, of course, wanted 100%.
I started treatments right away. I was NOT going to let this get me down. I remained upbeat and positive. I put my life in God’s hands and never looked back. I had hundreds of people praying for me. I had tremendous support from my church family and that made a world of difference. They even made me a chemo quilt with notes and prayers on it from many friends at the church. It kept me warm during treatments. I posted my health status on Facebook on a regular basis and had hundreds of people praying for me there. I handled the treatments fairly well and rarely got sick and didn’t lose my hair. After 12 rounds of chemo and other tests, I was finally declared cancer free, a survivor! Thank God!
What made the difference for me? Catching it just in the nick of time of course made a difference. However, what worked for me was having a very positive attitude. I was not going to let it get me down. Also, going back to work as early as possible while I was going through treatments helped. I also had excellent top-notch doctors and nurses! But, what really made a difference for me were the many, many people praying for me and providing support in so many ways. That’s what got me through this journey! You can do it too!Return to Faces of Blue