It is my privilege to take part in this anthology with other 19 authors writing on difficult experiences in our life.
The following authors and bloggers kindly answered questions posed by Stevie Turner regarding significant life experiences they had undergone. These events include sexual abuse, a near death experience, alcoholism, being diagnosed with cancer, depression, losing weight, getting married, being a mother to many children, being the daughter of a narcissistic mother, and many more!
All proceeds will go to Cancer Research.
Lucy V. Hay
Lynda McKinney Lambert
Abbie Johnson Taylor
An excerpt of my contribution
Miriam Hurdle – Stage IV Melanoma – Q&A: 1 to 5
- How did you find out your cancer?
During my annual physical checkup in the summer of 2008, my family doctor said the fibroid in my uterus grew three inches from 1986 to 2007 but grew four additional inches within the previous year. He referred me to the gynecologist. The gynecologist Dr. G confirmed the news and recommended a hysterectomy. He performed the hysterectomy on July 31, 2008. At 10:00 p.m. on August 1, Dr. G came to my hospital room to inform me I had melanoma cancer in the uterus and invaded the female organ.
- What stage was it in the first discovery?
Dr. G said melanoma is an aggressive cancer but mine was stage I or stage II which meant cancer had not spread to the lymph nodes.
- What was your initial reaction?
I was thankful the pathology detected the cancer at an early stage and had the hysterectomy done timely. Dr. G ordered tests and referred me to Dr. P, an oncologist. I was not scared or alarmed.
- Did you research on melanoma cancer? What did you find out?
I found out that melanoma is an aggressive type of cancer that usually shows up as a pigmented growth on the skin. However, less common types may be found in any organ or part of the body with melanin-containing cells (melanocytes). Melanocytes are cells in the body that make melanin, the substance that gives skin pigment or color. They are in many places throughout the body, including lymph nodes, bone, lung, liver, spleen, kidneys, eye, and brain, not just the skin. Considerable numbers of melanocytes are in the digestive and urogenital tracts and mucous glands. The non-skin melanomas also are called noncutaneous melanomas which are aggressive, metastatic and difficult to treat. Non-skin melanomas are not known to be caused by sun damage, exposure to ultraviolet rays, family history or moles.
- What kind of treatment did the doctor recommend?
When I met with the Dr. P, he said he had not dealt with melanoma and referred me to the University of California in Los Angeles (UCLA) Medical Center for surgery. I trusted the doctors would take care of the cancer.
To be continued……