This journey that I am on truly began 33 years ago. I was 15 when I finally started my period. I felt like a loser because all my friends had theirs already. My mother said “be thankful, because once you get it, you will wish you hadn’t.” Well little did she know that I would never have a “normal” cycle. I would go months at a time with no period in site. My mother would say “It will get normal.” but it never did.
I went into my twenties with the same issues, before I got married, I went to my doctors and they all assured me that it was just the way my body worked. Fast forward 6 years after our marriage and we were desperate to start a family, we had been trying for over 5 years. Praying, crying, believing that it would happen. But deep down I knew it was my body, my body rebelling once again, my body that everyone told me was just the way it was created was against me.
We started fertility treatments in 2003 and found out what I expected, it was my body that was causing our problem, thankfully the fertility doctors were true to their word. At our orientation they stood up there in the front of the room and said “we can almost guarantee that 1/2 of this class will walk out of this office pregnant.” My hubby and I looked at each other with hope in our eyes. They were able to “temporarily” fix my body’s problem just long enough for me to get pregnant. It took 3 whole rounds of artificial insemination for me to get pregnant. We were more than ecstatic to find out I was pregnant with twins, baby A & baby B. Once again my body would let me down and reject our precious baby B but also cling tightly to baby A. It’s a weird feeling to grieve and be joyful and thankful at the same time.
We found out baby A was going to be a boy, but as much as I wanted to be excited, every feeling made me nervous. I knew I wouldn’t feel safe until he was safely in my arms. Even with all of God’s promises that he whispered to me, it was a very intense time for me. And then one day, February 1, 2004, 4 months after loosing baby B, baby A decided it was time to come on out, about 3 1/2 months earlier than he was supposed to.
Thankfully our Dr.’s were able to stabilize me, my contractions and they sewed that baby in and now I found myself on bed rest for the rest of my pregnancy. 3 1/2 months of laying, resting and protecting our precious son. It was a success and our beautiful son was born on Mother’s Day, May 9, 2004. Seven LONG years after we were married. Seven years of tears, questions, frustration, rejection and watching everyone else start their families it seemed.
Fast forward 6 years and that beautiful boy was now asking us for a baby sister. Back to the fertility doctor I went. Back to testing, back to shots, hormones that make you feel like a crazy person. This time it takes on the second try and we are due in October 2010. I find out that my sister is also pregnant and this is going to be so exciting to be pregnant together. Unfortunately my body lets me down again and 7 weeks later on February 24, 2010 our little Bean as we had affectionately started calling the baby, because that was it’s size, left the warmth of my body for the beauty of heaven with Baby B. I cried and felt like my entire heart was ripped from my body and in my tears and questions, it was the first time I asked God why? In the stillness, I felt him whisper “so you will stop trying” Point taken God, at the time I didn’t understand the why and what he meant but I knew he had a reason. I was 39 years old and still didn’t have a normal body.
However, because I am human and instead of listening to what God told me to do, I wanted to try one more time before I turned 40, this time the fertility doctor told me that there were many years of lining in my uterus and we needed to clear it out before trying to get pregnant again. Unfortunately every doctor appointment cost $100 and we were out of money quickly and I was just done. I was tired, tired of the procedures, the medicine that once again made me feel like a crazy wild woman. I was tired of being poked and prodded. I was just done. I just wanted to enjoy my son who by this time was 7 years old. He was having his own issues and I needed to be there fully for him. I was beginning to understand why God had told me to stop in the first place.
Fast forward 5 years and hindsight is 20/20. My son needed us more than ever. He was in a deep place of depression that is unbelievable for a 12 year old but he was going through the fire and my hubby and I were right there going through it with him, together as a family. Realizing then that had we had our other children, our son wouldn’t get the best of his mom & dad. God truly is amazing and really does know what is best for you.
Which brings us to today, March 16, 2019. Our son is so good, God has brought us through the fire and we are better for it, however, my body that has always been an issue began to war against me once again. Starting in 2016, not having a normal cycle my entire life, I started having my period every month on the same day. I was ecstatic that I was finally “normal” I was 45 years old and finally for a year and a half my body and I were in sync with each other~total bliss and then BAM!!! just like that my body rebelled once again and I find myself on my period 3 weeks out of 4…….what the heck??? It is more than annoying to say the least. I went to my doctor and was told that I was in perimenopause, it’s “normal”. There is that word again, but by the middle of 2018 my body is completely rebelling and I am pretty much on my period EVERY single day.
After a conversation with a good friend, she encouraged me to go to the gynecologist. He performed a biopsy because he said my lining was still very thick, despite the fact that I had been bleeding every day for a year. That was February 26, 2019. 9 years and two days after loosing the Bean and one day after loosing my beautiful 98 year old Nana.
March 4, 2019, I got the call that millions of people have gotten. “Mrs. Chavez, this is doctor so & so, your biopsy came back and I regret to inform you that you have Stage 1 Endometrial cancer and you will have to have a hysterectomy.”
So, here I am almost 48 years old and my body is fighting me again. Am I scared? Yes, a little. Am I mad? not really, not about the cancer but that I never had a chance to give my son that sibling and never will be able to. Not that I was planning to ever try again but it just seems so final.
I have told my husband and my closest friends and family. I didn’t cry until I told my beautiful son, his tears and fear became my tears and fear and I finally cried for the first time. My husband told me you don’t have to be strong, let me be strong for you. I am learning that my son needs to see my tears, my emotions, so he knows that it’s OK to express his own.
I know we are going to be OK because our faith is in the great physician. It is my faith in God that gets me through everything I have ever faced in my life. God is so good and I know he’s got this, he’s got me in his arms and I am snuggling right up into his chest and resting there. I will praise him and I will be a testament that he needs me to be. My life has always been a testimony for him.
My next step in the “C” journey is to meet with the surgeon on April 15, tax day. Sure, take my money and my uterus. LOL!!!
I saw my doctor yesterday and she recommended that when I meet with the surgeon that I ask them to take out those offending ovaries too! They have only done what they were supposed to do 3 times in my life anyway. Who needs ’em? Especially if they can someday have their very own cancer, no thank you!
This journey is not over….to be continued.