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Lynn’s Story (Unspecified Cancer)

Cancer Ribbon Hi! My name is Lynn.  My story began in December of 2011. I am a registered nurse, and work in the operating room at CHS hospital. I was having recurrent bladder infections (this being my only symptom).  I was working my two job’s. I also was unable to lose weight (and certainly was not anemic). I went in for a routine hysterectomy to remove a noncancerous fibrous tumor.

Now fast forward to pathology report. I’m lying in bed with an incision from side to side, unable to move. When my gynecologist came to my door (big red flag) he said my report came back as a rare cancer that didn’t respond to chemo or radiation, but that no one was talking about hospice yet!

“Wait, what hospice,” I thought. “Hospice is for people who are dying! What are you talking about. You’re wrong, you’re wrong! I can’t die, I can’t die! I don’t want to die! Please God I don’t want to die! Get a grip Lynn! Breathe!” I kept telling myself.

Fast forward 8 weeks, I went to see Dr. Anderson in Houston.  Surprisingly, I was told that my cancer wasn’t that rare. It is caused by radiation, but it does have some response to chemo. I came home and prepared to start chemo. At first it wasn’t so bad. I thought I could do this, then my hair started falling out. I decided that I wanted to be in control, so I cut my hair, and my daughter shaved my head. I was totally unprepared for the woman staring back at me in the mirror. Every time I tried to cry my husband would hold me and say, “please don’t cry,” so I wouldn’t cry anymore.

On my 4th round of chemo the nurses typed in the wrong weight for me. They gave me enough chemo for someone who weighed 65 lbs more than me. They did this 2 weeks in a row!  That threw me into chemo toxicity. My wound reopened, I got a chemo burn on my hand from infiltration, and I became septic. I ended up in the hospital for one week. I was being pumped with continuous antibiotics.  I was also in a wheelchair for 9 weeks unable to walk due to the chemo toxicity.

I had to stop all treatment for 4 months.  That was 4 months with no treatment on a fast growing tumor. After being chemo free, and losing 26 lbs of fluid off my chest, I was able to walk again, and returned to work. I was re-scanned, and my fast growing tumor had not only stayed the same size, but it actually shrunk a little. Now I only had a small tumor measuring 3.6 cm x 1.4 cm. I resumed chemo again and was very devastated to lose the little black curly afro I had been growing.

I have my bad day’s but, my attitude and faith never failed me. Did I mention that 9 people in the operating room shaved their head’s with me the first time. This included; 2 anesthesia personnel, 3 doctors, 2 scrub techs, and 2 circulators. I GIVE THANKS TO GOD, AND SO MANY PEOPLE. I have received so much help from so many people, especially my ” baby”  boy (he’s actually 11), and my brother in law. I have lost lots of  “friend’s.” I have learned a lot about humility. I have cried a lot with my oldest son, and prayed a lot too. But the one thing that I will never stop doing for myself and my family is FIGHTING LIKE A GIRL! This too shall pass!

New Mexico
Submitted 10-16-2012

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.

This story 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.

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  1. Kay Phelan Neal

    Your story is amazing and I’m sorry you had to go through so much! I’m just beginning to have the nerve to read some stories on here. I am beginning my journey Lynn…Just found a lump in my breast on May 15, 2013 and diagnosed with cancer on June 24th…Today, July 7…I am waiting for July 12 to get here to get 2nd opinion and hopefully get started on my treatment. Gotta love insurance companies..however I am thankful I have insurance now.. BUT you are so inspiring….I’m gonna FIGHT LIKE A GIRL too! Thank you for sharing your story!

  2. Erica

    Sorry to hear about your diagnosis. My mom Lynn passed away June 25th 2013. I go to this story sometimes just to read because I feel like I can hear her voice as I read. I wanted to reply for her because she fought soooo hard and would have thrown her fist up to you saying “you get your chemo stomping boots on and fight like a girl!” good luck with your journey, my prayers are with you and your family. God bless- Lynn’s daughter, Erica

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