Updated June 2020
Life is so uncertain, when I first thought about making my life public, I thought it was the scariest thing I would ever do. But…this blog post will undoubtedly be the hardest one I will ever write and I am sure that those who know me will also be a bit surprised. I’ve been procrastinating but here is the highlight for me in 2019.
Things do not always work out the way we expect it to, and that’s the beauty of life. So here goes…
My health issues
I’ve always had a poor immune system so when I was admitted to hospital numerous times this year, I didn’t think too much about it. I’ve always suffered with my stomach and it is something that I am still learning to live with.
But what came as shock to me happened on my mother’s birthday. 2 July 2019 – a day I will never forget. I went to the doctor’s room to get my results back from various tests done, and what was in those results was something that never crossed my mind – even for a second.
I walked to my car and burst into tears
I just sat there as the doctor read my results to me, obviously the doctor has been through this numerous times before so I didn’t expect any empathy. At that moment I guess reality didn’t hit me and I wasn’t really processing what I just heard – but this is my way of dealing with serious news…I usually freeze on the inside and show no signs of emotion on the outside.
I walked to my car and burst into tears; it took at least 20 minutes for me to realize what just happened in those rooms. I was alone and drove to the hospital by myself, I was extremely ill to the point where, during some nights, I knew I would not wake up in the morning. Yet, every morning, I managed to open my eyes to see another day.
I couldn’t believe what I heard
I was on the doorstep of cancer. Did the doctor just say cancer? I’ve always had stomach issues but this was on another level. Well actually, the doctor said it was high-grade squamous cells that were spreading fast. So basically, precancer is the early stages of cancer that is not invasive. In other words – it is cancer cells that are confined to one area of the body and have not spread beyond a certain area yet.
I needed a second opinion so I took time off work and managed to find another doctor the next day who confirmed the diagnosis – I had precancer of the cervix. Many people will shy away from a topic like this due to their own reasons but actually, I’ve realized that this dreadful disease affects so many women. Unfortunately, so many women find out when it’s too late and there is nothing more medical treatment can do.
I am blessed
In my case, I am so blessed and grateful that I found out what was wrong with me so early on. On the same day that I got a second opinion, I had biopsies done and the doctor told me that if I don’t have an operation within the next three months, the bad cells will spread.
Earlier this year I wrote about a close friend of mine who died from this horrible disease. I later deleted that post because as I am updating my posts, I couldn’t bring myself to relive her passing away all over again.
My friends and family are angels on Earth
The day that I got my results, my friends visited me at my house and were so supportive, I guess sometimes you do need people who love you around.
My friends, sisters and mother were extremely supportive and kept in touch with me every single day, even on days when I unintentionally took my frustrations out on them. The rest of my family and friends will probably only find out about my illness through this blog post.
Everything happened so fast
A few days later I was booked in for an operation to have the high-grade cells removed. Everything happened so fast, I went from having stomach issues to the chance of having high-grade cells spreading in my body.
The good news
The best news came to me six weeks later when I went in for a follow-up. The doctor told me that they had to burn and cut off more than they initially anticipated because the cells were multiplying rapidly.
So, for now, I am healthy again and living each day to the fullest. But this is not the end, I now need to manage my health and have regular check-ups done to make sure everything is still good.
I will be posting more on my story which I believe will help people. I was so ignorant when it came to cancer and nobody thinks that it will happen to them.
The strange thing is that you look perfectly fine on the outside but your body is actually attacking itself on the inside. As much as this is a scary situation, it was better that I became aware of the facts and handled the situation while I still had control.
But I don’t look sick
If you look at my pictures (on my homepage and about page), you will not think that I had to battle a horrible illness.
I don’t look like a person with medical issues. If anything, people think I pay lots of attention to my health and work out.
Yes, I do exercise and eat healthily. This is my way of fighting my immune system every single day. People who aren’t aware of my medical challenges ridicule me for being a vegan or think I’m shallow for wanting to take care of my body.
The things we take for granted
People don’t understand that being able to eat whatever you want or physically do whatever you want to is a blessing.
Lots of people take their abilities for granted and throw insults at others that cannot do what others can, due to reasons such as mine, which is medical.
I don’t get offended though, I smile and just tell people that I prefer not to eat or do certain things. Not everyone deserves an explanation from you. Not everyone deserves to hear your story.
But if you are still reading this and made it this far…
I am hoping that by sharing my story, I will help other people realize just how important check-ups are, even if you look and feel completely healthy.
Don’t take your health or life for granted. Maybe you can handle everything life throws at you. I handled my situation the best I knew how – by being determined and strong.
The people that love you
When you are faced with health challenges, don’t forget that those who love you also suffer, they might even suffer (emotionally) more than you. You will be going through physical and emotional pain. But those that love you, are watching you deteriorate right in front of them and there’s nothing they can do to make you better.
I understand that if you are going through a life-threatening illness, it is challenging because you are trying to overcome physical, mental, emotional and financial challenges.
But don’t forget about those that are supporting you. Try not to take your frustrations out on them. They mean well, even if they don’t know how to show it.
Remember that no fancy car, big house, attractive partner or high-paying job can replace your health, life or those that you love, or love you.
So be mindful of those that love you, because in times like these, you will realize that all you have, are those that love you and care about you.
*This story is based on my personal experience and is not intended as medical advice