Imagine being just twenty years old and head over heels in love. That's not hard to imagine or remember. Now add to that being a newly wed and finding out your pregnant. Wow! What a great story we have all heard it a hundred times young lovers starting their family, it is an exciting fabulous experience. Many family stories start out just that way.
This one takes a turn. The very first trip to the doctor, confirms pregnancy and more. The doctor was concerned and says he is going to run a test and he will let me know the results. Life goes on because I feel fine and I'm young and happy; whatever he was worried about couldn't be that big of a deal.
Then the doctor's office called and they didn't want to discuss the test results with me over the phone they wanted me to come in to discuss it. My thought was okay, it was a privacy issue, no big deal and I set up the appointment for the next day. My husband was working so I went alone.
Still not to worried, call it young love's ignorance, or just chalk it up to blindness. I walked into the doctor's office and couldn't wait to get it over with to get back home and make supper for my husband. Then the doctor came into the room.
"I'm sorry," he says, "you have cervical cancer and may have to give up this baby to save your own life." I was dumbfounded, tears started to come into my eyes. This wasn't real, this isn't happening, he didn't just say cancer and give up the baby.
"I'd like to set up an appointment for you with a specialist as soon as possible. He will do a biopsy and let you know more about your options but I don't want you to get your hopes up." Really, hope, I think he pretty much ripped out my heart, threw it on the floor and stomped on it, hope wasn't going to be a problem. I just wanted to concentrate on breathing and not turning into a complete puddle of emotions in front of this doctor who seemed to be devoid of anything resembling concern or kindness.
It was only a ten minute drive from the doctor's office to my house but that day it took me nearly an hour to make it back home. I stopped twice to just let the sobs take over and get them out before starting to drive again. In a single moment I went from joyous newlywed bliss to my first experience with terror.
Of course when my husband came home, all he had to do was walk through the door for me to lose it and start sobbing all over again. Then came the retelling of the story and telling him about the new doctor's appointment. Always the optimist, through his own tears, he said the doctor didn't know anything, that was why he was sending me to a specialist.
It was a long two weeks before the two hour drive to the specialist and then another long two weeks before we would go back to find out more. Remember, I am pregnant and the baby is growing in me all this time. By the time we went back to the specialist I was five months along.
At that point I had pretty much made up my mind that no matter what else happened my baby was going to be born healthy. If that meant I was giving up my life for my baby's then so be it.
Well, I am very glad to announce that yes, I did have cervical cancer but my specialist said that I would be fine to have my baby and then come back and see him for surgery afterward. He couldn't promise me how that would go or if I would be able to have more but I would not need to give up my beautiful bundle of love growing inside of me.
He was born healthy and strong and now he is 19 years old, handsome, smart and wonderful. We have always been very close as I truly appreciate the fact that he is here with me at all. My first fears as a young mom quickly turned to terror but that would not stop this mother's love for her son. I had the surgery and three more children and I'm still cancer free.