My name is Michelle Sybert. I am a 31 year old mother of two living in Southern California. I own and write for a blog called Her Cup Over floweth. I write about being a cancer survivor and parenting two preschoolers! Recently, I was asked by Meghan, via my blog, to share my cancer story.
Her it is:
In January of 2006 I was diagnosed with Stage I Endometrial Stromal Sarcoma, which is a fancy word for uterine cancer. ESS is a very rare form of uterine cancer however, occurring in roughly 3% of all diagnosed cases. I had a low grade version of this extremely rare cancer and at 28, almost 29 years old, I was blown away by my diagnosis. It was stage one, yes...It certainly was not the end of the world. I was thankful to be alive. I did not have to have chemo or radiation and in what seemed like a whirlwind of events, I was diagnosed, treated and given the blessing of "no evidence of disease". I am a very fortunate fighter.
What I haven't told you in this story is that at 29 years old, I had a total abdominal hysterectomy. This meant the doctor removed everything-ovaries, tubes, uterus. It also meant that I would be enjoying premature menopause. Bleck! For some, menopause is like a speck of dust on your television screen-barely noticeable. For others, it's side effects can be down right ugly. Because my particular cancer is estrogen driven, I am not allowed to be on any form of hormone replacement therapy (artificial or natural). This makes for some very interesting adjustments to my emotional state and diet! (Did you know soy products contain estrogen enhancing properties?)
You cannot prepare for such a thing as this-Cancer. For me, however, there was little down time. Little time to "reflect". With a 2 year old and 1 year old there was very little time to stop and contemplate what it all meant. i was too busy chasing after two toddlers! At times, I felt like I never even had cancer-except that every time I put on my PJ's, I see the 6 inch scar on my tummy. I struggled for many months with depression and I never fully relied on the God I said I believed in. Ibattled the those hormone fluxes inwardly alone. Since then, I have begun to trust God completely with my life and my cancer. I am incredibly thankful to him for these last three years because you see, had my husband and I waited to have children-they might not exist. I was pregnant with my daughter 3 months after getting married and pregnant with my son 7 months after my daughter was born. I was diagnosed with cancer when my son was 9 months old........I am deeply deeply thankful for my two little blessings.
Cancer survivors and those in the midst of battle often say they are thankful for each day they are alive. It's not just some pithy saying...they say it because it's true.
I support Get the Bean and your endeavors to raise awareness about Cancer. thanks for fighting the good fight!