I was 62 when I was diagnosed with uterine cancer. When I first noticed the bleeding, I was leery, I was a little worried but it wasn’t that heavy ... for a couple days it would stop and I’d think, “Oh it was nothing.” But then it didn’t stop. I waited long enough that it was in the back of my mind all the time. It was up to where I was having to wear protection. And I finally said to myself, “Worrying about it is not good. I need to go get this looked into.”
After I finally broke down and made the appointment with the gynecologist, she checked out my uterus pretty thoroughly. She did notice there was a lot of thickening of the lining of the uterus, so she told me at that time she was kind of expecting that it could be cancer, and that she did need to do a biopsy.
After I had the biopsy until I found out that I had cancer was only three or four days before she called to have me come in.
When the gynecologist called me, she wanted me to come in to give me the news. She wouldn’t give it to me over the phone, which, of course, I figured there was bad news. So I called my daughter and she went with me. I was in a total state of panic. The doctor asked me if I was ok. I said my insides were in a turmoil. So she did give me a medication to calm me down and told me pretty much what to expect. That they would send me to the hospital in Denver where they would do a hysterectomy.
I was more than ready to get this taken care of — have them take out all this cancer and try to help me that way.
When I first woke up after the surgery, the pain really wasn’t that bad. I know they had me on drugs and things and I honestly can’t remember too much pain.
I did recover fairly quickly. I could do the steps and I was not allowed to drive, of course. I had pretty much strength but it did take I think only about two to three weeks before I felt I was pretty able to drive and things like that.
After my hysterectomy, the doctor who had done the surgery gave me the option of having chemo or radiation and he gave me the odds of it returning with or without the radiation or chemo, and I think there was only about a five percent difference if I had continued with chemo. I was afraid of that because of the horror stories but so I decided to not do that – just continue with my every three-month exams.
All my grandchildren and all my children were a big incentive to get me through this, to keep me strong — that I had something to live for and I was going to fight as good as I could.
I really believe my positive attitude after the surgery helped with my recovery so very much. The most thing I was so thankful for was just that the surgery itself was over and I was recuperating well. I was thinking positive about the future and I think all of that combined to really make the recovery go faster.
I definitely appreciate good health now. It’s really a valuable asset. It’s the most valuable thing you can have and I appreciate each day that I feel well.