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Daughter talking to mother on the phone both with worried expressions

The Day It Happened

I still remember the day my daughter, Crystal, called me to tell me she thought she had cancer. I was sitting in the living room resting when the call came in. I didn’t believe it. How could my daughter have cancer? It wasn’t an absolute definite yet because she still had more testing to do. I prayed these tests would show a different story, but I was wrong. She did go for those tests and she was eventually diagnosed with stage 2 Hodgkin lymphoma.

The worst part was she didn’t tell me earlier about how she was feeling and what caused her to go to the doctor. This was because she didn’t want to cause me any stress. I have thyroid cancer and she wanted to protect me until she was sure. How scary that must have been for her. All I could think was, if I would have known, would I have encouraged her to go to the doctor sooner? I want to believe I would have. I think I would have, mostly because of my circumstances. I put off seeing a doctor and ended up with stage 4 thyroid cancer. I believe I would have encouraged her to go and see someone, but I’m sure I wouldn’t have thought she had cancer. I would have thought it was probably nothing. After all, she was only 25. Who gets cancer at 25?

The beginning

This was just the beginning of a year-long process. Those tests that Crystal had to undergo to show she had cancer was just the beginning of her journey. She had many more tests over the next months as well as chemo infusions, hydration treatments, and emergency room visits. In addition to all of that, we had pharmacy visits and even had to go to the store for special foods that she would able to eat. We just wanted her to get well.

It turned out OK

Luckily for us, it turned out well in the end. Crystal just had her one year post chemo doctor visit and she is cancer free. They plan to take her port out over the summer. She can’t wait. And…her hair is growing back. She feels very lucky to have beat cancer. She knows not everyone does.

What I’ve learned

Please be sure to encourage your family members and friends to see a doctor regularly. I now firmly believe that having a yearly checkup is important and so does Crystal. By doing this, hopefully, if there is an issue, we will find out sooner rather than later. We all know that early detection of any cancer will typically bring a better outcome. I always tell anyone thinking about whether they should see a doctor or not to go. Nobody wants to hear bad news, but the fact is, once you know, you can work on getting better. Finding the time to see the doctor for a yearly visit is definitely better, and will take less time than waiting and having to go for weekly chemo visits.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The Blood-Cancer.com team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

Comments

  • Patricia Tullis Larson
    8 months ago

    Please don’t rely on yearly check-ups. I had my yearly exam and 3 1/2 weeks later I was diagnosed with Multiple Myleloma. I developed a bad cough and went to express care thinking I probably had pneumonia. My lab results came back showing such a drop in my hemoglobin level that the PA didn’t even want me to drive a short distance to the hospital. I was shocked to see such a drastic change in such a short time. When I got to the ER and had a chest x-ray done they could see the MM had metasized to my bones. So please don’t wait if something seems off just because you have had a recent check-up. I am doing well almost 16 months later but know I have to be glad I thought I had pneumonia.

  • Ann Harper moderator author
    8 months ago

    I totally agree – just go!

  • amber.lynch moderator
    9 months ago

    I am sure you were a tremendous support to your daughter, especially having been through Thyroid cancer yourself. Don’t beat yourself up for not knowing her symptoms sooner. Stage 2 is still early detection. We should all be more vigilant in our self care.

  • Ann Harper moderator author
    9 months ago

    Isn’t it funny that we make time for so many unimportant things, but our health we put on the back burner. Thank you for your comment.

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