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Thank you for checking out my page. Please help me support National Ovarian Cancer Coalition by making a contribution to my fundraiser and sharing this page with your family and friends. Any donation is much appreciated. Together, we can make a difference!
I beat this cancer known as the "silent killer" twice. I CONSIDER myself LUCKY and a MIRACLE. With a second chance at life, my main goal is to make a difference and make sure I continue to share my story and spread as much awareness as I can. I want to be an inspiration to others to never give up and always have hope and positive.
Below is my story and a few pictures along the journey. If you have any questions or would love to talk, please don't hesitate to reach out to me.
I was diagnosed with Stage 1 C Ovarian cancer right after my 24th birthday in August, 2012. I started noticing my stomach was bloating and would not flatten. It continued to get bigger and bigger and was a concern for me. I thought maybe I was gaining weight from all the junk food and did not think anything of it. I waited until my annual exam to get checked out. My doctor said everything felt fine and looked normal. It wasn't until I pointed out my stomach for it to show some concern to my doctor. I explained maybe I was fat and gaining weight and she mentioned to me "No, this is not fat, there is something internally there." After this appointment, I went to get an ultrasound where they noticed a large mass but wanted a clearer view so they sent me for an MRI. Later on that day is when I got a phone call from my doctor asking me to come in to the office that night with my parents. I'll never forget this day as I was down the shore on the beach when I received this phone call. At this point, I was freaking out because something was wrong. The doctor told me I had a huge mass covering my right ovary, kidney and my stomach and would need to get surgery ASAP. I remember sitting in the chair in her office, crying and crying and not knowing what would happen to me. She had scheduled me to meet my surgeon at the end of the week and they had my surgery scheduled for the following week at Jefferson Hospital in Philadelphia. I met my doctor that Friday and became comfortable with him and the situation. Since the mass so was big and a concern for my right kidney, I had to have an outpatient surgery on Sept 15, 2012 to put stents in. The stents were to help save my kidneys and it can give my doctor a better view going in for my major surgery that Monday and to help my kidneys. I had my first surgery Sept 17, 2012. Surgery went well and he was able to remove the entire mass that was bigger than a melon and he had to take out my right ovary and took out cancer tumors on the left side and kept my left ovary. Recovery was tough but I got through it with the support of my family and friends. Pathology results came back that I had Ovarian cancer but I was a walking miracle considering how big these tumors were. I was considered a miracle by my doctors. I did not know what I was going to wake up to and was very blessed that my cancer was contained in one area. This means I did not undergo any radiation or chemo at this time. We kept a very close eye on it every 2 months with check ups, exams, MRIs, Ultrasounds to play it safe. Unfortunately, September 2013 rolls around and the cancer had came back on my left side. This was a more intensive surgery as he took lymph nodes, my appendix out and did a staging surgery as well as plunging of my stomach to get all the cancer cells out of the area the best he can. Recovery was tough as well considering they went through the same incision and I had more things removed from this surgery. Same thing as the first, this cancer was contained and it didn't require me for any additional treatment. To this day, I had no re-occurrences but I have issues with treatments for treating my symptoms as I continued to suffer from things from this cancer. This typical cancer doesn't get diagnosed easily and once you do know you have it, it's too late and this cancer occurs in women in their late 40s, early 50s. I am young to have had this cancer, TWICE. My goal is to spread as much awareness as possible to save other female's lives and share my story hopefully inspires people with my strength and determination.
I hope to inspire people to pay attention to your body and get checked out. It is better to be on top of your symptoms then to continue to ignore them. Cancer has taken A LOT away from me but it will not take away my determination, positivity, strength and strong will.
I continue to share my story on social media, speaking at high schools, middle schools, colleges, medical classes, in magazines, I was featured on Fox news twice . Any chance I can get to spread awareness and my story I take full advantage. Together we fight, no one fights alone.
^check out the story Fox 29 news reported on me.
^ check out this video on my story with Fox 29 News Joyce Evans
https://youtu.be/8SWGnPA5Qo4 ^ my story featured on Fox 29 news with Joyce Evans,