We’re All United in this Fight

I am a teacher, mother of two boys, a wife, friend, freedom fighter, daughter, and sister. At 39, a few weeks before Christmas of 2016, I went into my local urgent care clinic with intense back and abdominal pain. I’d been there a week before, but they’d sent me home with antibiotics and a diagnosis of a bladder infection. The antibiotics did nothing to ease the agony. On the contrary, it heightened it.

During this second visit, the urgent care doctor was adamant that she would not release me until she figured out what was ailing me. A CT scan of my abdomen and blood work revealed an elevated white blood count, 17,000 to be exact, and a perforated colon. Yup, the tumor had gotten so large that it had busted my pipes. There was a hot mess brewing inside.

My surgeon was God sent. His fingers worked magic and he gifted me with three things by the time he was done: a colostomy bag, a huge gash from my belly button downward, and the diagnosis of-Stage 3 colorectal cancer.

Fortunately, I made it home by Christmas week, coming back from near death. I’d lost 30lbs and looked skeletal. I think my youngest was terrified of me.

I started chemo in late January and am now in Session 4 of 8. As my body is succumbed to the forces of chemo, my mind began raging. I went through all the stages of grief and decided that I would fight this beast with heart, mind, and soul.

I started writing. I’m currently working on a book, my first, that interweaves the lives of my 8 angels as I continue through the next four sessions of Chemo.

Liza Baker, health coach extraordinaire and soul sister, also flew out from Michigan to spend a week with me. As she helped me focus my mind and soul, I realized that I couldn’t hide behind the veil anymore. I did nothing to deserve this, and there was nothing to hide. By speaking and sharing my story, I realized I could help others through their misery.

After the outpouring of support, my eldest son beseeched me to start my own blog: “The 8 Faces of Cancer.

Livestrong has always represented hope and life. I’ve followed along and taken strength in their mission. I aim to beat this, mind, body, and soul. Would love to connect with and help others through this eye opening experience because ultimately, we are united in this fight.

Marine, Colorectal Cancer Survivor

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We’re All United in this Fight was originally published in Livestrong Voices on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.