I was 27 and had had a biopsy the previous week due to an abnormally thick uterine lining detected during two internal scans. Part of me knew what was coming but when she explained the results had come back and she was sorry but I had womb cancer and PCOS I had an overwhelming feeling of suffocation.
As her receptionist had failed to tell me I was to bring a close friend or family member I had to take in the worst news of my life alone in the doctors office and all I could think was ‘’how the hell am I supposed to tell my loved ones??’’
My journey started almost 2 years prior when after years of hit and miss periods and a year of crippling pains I finally braved it and ventured to the doctors for a check up. This was one of many failures from the doctors that I was to endure up until my eventual diagnosis!
I explained my symptoms to the male doctor who rolled his eyes and told me to lay on the table whilst he felt my stomach. A matter of seconds later he returned to his seat informing me it was just IBS and to buy something from the chemist. Despite my confusion & my explanations regarding my periods I was ushered out of the door & left to request the IBS medication he had suggested.
Of course this didn’t work and after another couple of months of issues I returned to see another doctor. Luckily she took my complaints a lot more seriously and requested a smear test as I’d stupidly missed my initial offering.
My second problem came when calling the doctors surgery to enquire about the results and the receptionist telling me they had come back abnormal and to speak to a doctor urgently. Panic & tears set in (the first of many along my journey) and I awaited the doctors call back whilst trying to keep myself busy to fight the nausea that had set in. Fortunately the doctor explained the receptionist had been mistaken and my smear test results had come back clear so the next step was to have an abdominal scan & an internal scan to check for PCOS or endometriosis.
Two scans later and I was sent for a biopsy months later in October 2019. The following week when I received my results my mum and best friend had been texting me telling me to let them know what my results were and wishing me well. Sitting in my car in floods of tears, hyperventilating & shaking like a leaf I responded to my mums text explaining I didn’t even know what to say to her & quickly replied to my best friend saying ‘it’s cancer I’m so sorry.’
Along this whole journey I’ve apologised to those I love be it when I was initially given my diagnosis, when I’m in agony and aren’t as happy go lucky as I once was, or even when they ask how I am and I have to tell them I don’t feel well, I still apologise. The worst feeling in all of this has been seeing the hurt it has caused my closest people, on the day of my diagnosis myself and my best friend spent half an hour crying to each other on the phone, she’s never been a cryer and again I apologised because I was the cause of her hurt.
So far I’m one of the lucky ones, I have a fantastic pair of Macmillan nurses and an amazing gynaecologist who I’m dealing with who explained the main treatment is a hysterectomy, however due to my age and the fact that I’ve always dreamt of having a child of my own I went for the option of having the Merina coil fitted & taking medication called Megestrol once daily whilst having biopsies every three months to ensure the cancer is responding well & isn’t spreading.
It’s now September 2020 and after a year of excruciating pains & debilitating depression & anxiety I’ve finally found a pain relief that works for me and has given me a new sense of freedom & allows me to feel like my old self again.
I don’t know what the future holds for me, if I’ll ever be able to have children naturally, a surrogate, or through adoption. All I know is I’m taking life one step at a time and determined to live for the moment and refusing to be beaten by womb cancer.
Regardless of how it happens I’ll do whatever it takes to make myself a family of my own and I’m beyond grateful for the support from my family and my best friend because without them I wouldn’t be here right now aged 28 & braver than I could ever imagine I could be.