Posted on September 24, 2014
We have been touched by asbestos in individual ways, yet we are joined together by a bond of community. As a testament to the strength of our global family, the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO) is highlighting the courageous stories of our members with the “Share Your Story” feature on our website.
This week, we would like to honor the story of Tina, who is a part of our ADAO family.
We encourage you to submit your personal stories by clicking here and following the simple instructions on the page. In sharing, comes healing. Remember, you are not alone.
“I Was Given a Second Chance for the Purpose of Helping Others Through this Horrible Unnecessary Cancer” – Tina’s Story
Location: West Virginia
Date of Birth: 19-DEC-1966
Date of Diagnosis: 14-DEC-2009
How has asbestos changed your life?
In 2009, 2 weeks before Christmas, our lives changed forever. I was first diagnosed with ovarian cancer and the doctor told me that it didn’t look good and said, while I was alone in the hospital, that I had 6 months to a year to live. I prayed all that night and God spoke to me “you need only to be still, I will fight for you…” Later I learned Exodus 13:13
I told my family and the doctor that I would not do his treatments, they all told me that I was in denial. I saw 3 more oncologists and got a second opinion on my pathology and learned that it was mesothelioma of the peritoneum which is the lining in your abdomen that holds all of your organs in place. I also learned if I would have followed the first doctors treatments it would have killed me because it was the wrong concoction for this type of cancer.
I am now being treated by Dr. Alexander at the University of Maryland medical center. In may of 2010 he operated on me, opened up my abdomen removed my peritoneum, omentum and splean. He then poured hot chemo in my abdomen, it was an 8 1\2 hour surgery, I had 57 staples up my abdomen, it now looks like a road map!!, I was in the hospital 11 days and have been cancer free since! I have to have scans every 6 months. The anxiety is horrible! I now suffer with adhesion pain and back pain. Some days I think,” was it really worth it, I can’t take much more” but I know that I was given a second chance for the purpose of helping others thru this horrible unnecessary cancer. Because of Dr. Alexander I got to celebrate my 25th wedding anniversary with my best friend and truly the love of my life.
I got to see my son go to college and I got to dance with him at his wedding!
I got to see my first grand baby be born and I get to see him grow up. I get to watch my son be a wonderful father to him.
I get to spend mother\daughter in law time together with my sweet loving daughter in law ( she truly is like a daughter to me).
I get to live each day appreciating all that God has blessed me with!
Three things I want to leave you with.
Always trust your gut, its usually God telling you some thing is not right…
Go for different opinions until you feel in your gut that its the best treatment for you. Best to go to a bigger hospital where there is research being done.
And always live your life as if its your last day and love with no regrets!
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