The beginning of this year, my family and I received the worst news anyone could hear. I was one day shy of my 20th birthday when I was told I had cervical cancer.
I’m very lucky I pushed and pushed to go to the hospital, because the doctor I was going to for birth control would just keep changing my type of birth control, no matter how heavy or how long I had my period. In January, it got so bad, I didn’t have a day where I wasn’t bleeding, and at this point, I had blood clots bigger then my hand at times. That’s when we loaded up and headed to our local hospital. Thankfully, the doctor knew exactly what she was looking at and set me up with Christiana at the Helen F. Graham Cancer Center within less than a week. From there, we discussed with the doctor the plan of action I would have to take. I was at stage 3 at this point with a very rare and aggressive type of cervical cancer–glassy cell carcinoma. I was the youngest person to ever develop this type of cancer, at basically 20 years old. Their main focus was to just save my life.
We started chemotherapy and radiation immediately, and that’s what honestly made me feel the worst. I was always so tired and so drained and always throwing up. Hospitals became my second home. Every week, I was basically in there for seven days and would then be sent home for a UTI, until they realized both my kidneys were shutting down. I had to have a stent placed in my right kidney and a nephrostomy tube in the left. Let me tell you, a nephrostomy tube is hell. This tube definitely stops you dead in your tracks. You have to watch where you are and always make sure your tube doesn’t get caught on something. You’re never comfortable.
We find out this month, October, what my new PET scan will show, and hopefully by the grace of God, I will be cancer free. Even though, with my family’s genes, my doctor said I will have to be proactive for the rest of my life and get checks basically every three months.
I’ll be happy to say I beat cervical cancer. I’ve definitely had my fair share of pain. At times, I couldn’t even explain how bad the surgery was or the pain I was going through. Plenty of times, I was well over a 10.
Throughout my chemo treatments, I’ve met very special people I will always hold close to my heart, and at the end of the day, I’ll be right there to fight with them until we can all say we are cancer free. Until then, I will just “Fight like a Girl.” Thanks for reading my story!!!
The informational content of this article is intended to convey a personal experience and, because every person’s experience is unique, should not be relied upon as a substitute for professional healthcare advice.