My hope in sharing my story is to encourage women to trust their intuition and act on it when something doesn’t seem right with their body--even when symptoms might be brushed off by the medical experts, like physicians assistants & even some physicians. No woman is too young to have this disease, nor does this disease have any unique symptoms. Thank goodness there are support groups like the ones on HealthUnlocked to keep us sane.
Blogging started as a way to journal and express my feelings without bothering others, but it turned into so much more as time went on. [Ed note: see Rosemary's blog here.] As my search for insight and information on ovarian cancer expanded I found it was very hard to decipher and realized that if I, like several others have done, recorded their journey and shared resources, it just might make it a little less hard for the next lady who had the same type of questions.
On April 5th, 2015, I had my appendix removed. My PA felt that after recovering from this, I should start to feel much better. I kept questioning why I was no longer able to eat things I had always been able to eat prior to 2015. But she said it can take up to a year to feel better after a surgery, so I kept coasting along, even though I knew I was not feeling even 60% of my normal self. Here is what they said might be wrong.
Then one morning, I was too sick to even go to the hospital and even asked my hubby to stay home with me. I thought I was dying but didn’t know why, other than that the pain I was experiencing was like nothing I could remember. My daughter said it sounded like I had experienced a cyst rupturing and that I needed to go see my doctor.
When I suggested this to my doctor, she laughed and said cysts don’t really rupture; they may hurt if they are inflamed or twist slightly. I didn’t just accept her conclusion this time, and that is when I demanded answers and insisted on having a scan done.
After a pelvic and abdominal scan was done, I received a call the very next morning at 8:00 A.M.. The culprit was glaring back at us. Two huge (by the scans’ descriptions) ovarian masses, which were pressing on several other organs, were all the confirmation I needed to know they were the source of my illness. A CA125 blood test came back with an elevated number as well.
My surgery was on April 5th, 2016, exactly one year to the day from my appendix operation. What was thought to be a 3 hour surgery turned into 6 hours! Several portions of my colon were redacted and a stint was placed between one of my kidneys and bladder.10 days later I was back home and recovering.
Chemo started the Friday before Memorial Day weekend and finished up the Friday before Labor Day weekend. My hubby had to spend all three holidays watching me be sick, bless his heart.
I made only one promise during my recovery, and that was to my daughter: that I would try my very best to be well enough to take care of my 1st grandson while she was giving birth to the 2nd grandson. I succeeded nicely in being able to fulfill this promise and had a wonderful time and enjoyed the visit beyond words.
Six months later after chemo, I am still doing well and know I am not alone. Enjoying family, friends and food--maybe the latter a little too much, as I have put on too much weight. Onward, my teal sisters.