Story Time/History of this Blog/Why I Started Blogging: In the summer of 2010, I was a happily married 28-year-old who lives with cystic fibrosis. I had found a pace of life that worked for me, a great job (working at my dad’s jewelry studio), loving friends & family, and the most adorable nephew in the world. There was a little issue in my lower abdomen that I had to get checked out, but overall life was good!
Here is an email I wrote to friends and family on June 30, 2010.
Prepare yourself: I’ve got some bad news to share in regards to my health. I have been following up on some issues in my lower abdomen which have been with me for a while now, with no symptoms, and this week have had an ultrasound and a CT scan to find out more information. It turns out that the result was a highly abnormal scan, of ovarian malignancy. This term was used by my doctor interchangeably with cancer. She is convinced that the “complex pelvic mass” is cancer, but it can’t be 100% sure until the mass is removed. It’s big. It’s 17x13x9cm big. They also suspect that it has infiltrated my omentum (the protective layer of the abdomen). There is fluid in my abdomen and pelvis.
Please pray for us, this is a serious diagnosis and we don’t know anything more about it yet. I know that I will soon be meeting with a gynacological (sp?) oncologist to have an exam/counseling, and then surgery as soon as they can. I will keep you posted as we learn more.
As you are now experiencing, this is a total shock. I never thought that I would have cancer – as Mark says, “lightning doesn’t strike twice!” We joke about it some, but living with Cystic Fibrosis gives us some issues by itself!
It is important to me to be thankful in all things. Right now, here’s what I’m thankful for:
1. You! – thank you in advance for your MANY prayers on our behalf.
2. God’s visible presence in all of this through timing – Mom and I were planning on flying to CA to see Grandpa and Grandma Ryan on their 65th anniv this next month, but we never bought tickets. Josh and I are always planning on vacations by this time in the summer and we have no plans/no tickets purchased. Also, a smaller thing but so important to me: April (in Nashville) found out by a phone call from me today – and her parents and nephew are with her visiting from MI so she’s not alone! It all helps my heart and shows me that, although this is scary, God is fully present and even showing himself to me – ALREADY. I love Him for that!!
3. This may be a little twisted, but I have CF. I never expected a “full” life span – I never knew I would live to be 28 and married and HAPPIER than I’ve ever been. I am not being pulled and jerked into a shocking state where I have to reconsider my whole life set-up. I was not expecting cancer, but it is different for me to find out I have cancer than me without CF. I already know that I live each day by God’s grace. So do we all.
4. I am going to have surgery and probably stuff afterward, maybe chemo, I don’t know. BUT as far as my CF goes, I am healthy right now! It’s summer, I’m feeling good, and I am as able as I could ask to be to fight for my health.
..AND here are some things you could pray about:
1. Sleep – (all of us) – for strength and to keep out those middle-of-the-night thoughts that we all know about
2. My appetite- I don’t want to lose any more weight than I need, I know this can be a health concern for me so let’s start praying now!
3. The obvious- please pray for healing, for the surgeons, and for a complete recovery from cancer.
4. Josh and I, and everyone close to us – this news is affecting lots of people, you included. Let’s pray that our hearts won’t be troubled, that we will not be fearful, that we will feel God’s power and His love, and (this is big for me) give us a sound mind. NO WILD IMAGINATIONS.
Update after surgery:
After a successful surgery on July 21, 2010, I am glad to report that I am cancer free! When the *giant* tumor was removed, we were immediately told that it was benign. Thank you, Jesus!! More details of my recovery were recorded on blog posts here in July/August, 2010. Check out the menu under “Story Time” for all posts Pre/Post Surgery. Thanks!