Always Have Hope and Never Give Up! My Journey to Getting Healthy
In February 2012, I was scheduled for my yearly gynecological visit. I was a little concerned because during intimacy, I felt pain. I was eager to speak with my doctor. I trusted him after treating me for 30 years, delivering my babies and always being very thorough. I felt a bit embarrassed to bring it up, but I found the courage to ask. My doctor was dismissive and said everything was ok. Because I trusted him, I never thought to question him further.
I continued having pain during sexual relations. The whole time, I was remembering the doctor saying nothing was wrong. Months went by and my pain got worse. I started to have stomachaches after eating. I was having some constipation issues, but thought nothing could be wrong because I had no other symptoms like a bloating stomach, or feeling tired or sick.
A year went by and it was time for my yearly gynecological visit. I was eager to let the doctor know that my pain was still there. He told me, again, that everything was ok. I was concerned and mentioned that the pain was worse. He agreed to do a sonogram and the screening for ovarian cancer, which was a blood test. I got the call from the doctor’s office saying, “Limor, we are very concerned, your CA125 came back high.” Now it felt very scary and real. The emotions just took over. I was anxious for my surgery.
March 5th could not come soon enough. I ended up having a full hysterectomy, and the pathology report said that the cancer was everywhere. Staying in the hospital recovering was tough, but all I kept thinking about was getting better and beating cancer!! I was determined to not let this change my life… I was just slowing it down for a bit. I have 3 wonderful teenagers and I could not let them down. I had to be strong and show them that being a good role model is how we were all going to get through this.
I was scheduled for a total of 18 treatments of chemotherapy. The countdown started. Every week after each treatment, I was one day closer to getting healthy. My kids had been my rock, telling me every day that I looked beautiful without my hair and that I was going to make a positive difference in the world from this negative situation.
This week I celebrated 3 years cancer free. I am so thankful each day. Being a peer supporter for Sharsheret has been amazing. Helping a woman going through the same thing I went through, gives me much joy. No one knows what you are going through unless you have been there yourself. I want to help people feel better, one day at a time. I plan to raise awareness that if you think something feels wrong, don’t put it off. Challenge your doctor even when he dismisses it and says it’s nothing. We know our bodies better than anyone else.
In life, I cannot choose the all my battles. Faced with challenges, staying strong, having hope and faith, and surrounding myself with caring people, is what got me through, and now helps me deal with unplanned events in life.
Always Have Hope and Never Give Up!