In 2015, just a few weeks after losing my mum I had a total hysterectomy. I did it to reduce my risk (not eliminate as you will read) of Ovarian Cancer. By the way being menopausal in your early 30’s is amazing (just ask my husband 😂)!
My mum had a hysterectomy in her early 40’s having suffered with endometriosis, a horrible & painful condition which I also inherited. Years after her hysterectomy her endometriosis had returned, which is when she & the doctors decided to remove her “healthy” ovaries. They removed them in another operation & as standard practice sent them away for analysis. A few weeks later mum was told they had found cancerous cells. It must have been a weird sensation. You had cancer, you didn’t know, now it’s gone & you don’t need to worry. They had removed everything, but she was offered chemotherapy as a possibility, but believing all was well declined their offer & stuck with the regular check ups. She felt ok, & with trusting the doctors word that it had all gone, she carried on her life. She had her checks & they were all clear. Each & every check was fine.
I remember the day she posted this on Facebook:
We were all ecstatic! We knew she worried (I know where I get it from), but sadly things like this don’t help. My mum passed away on 20th April 2015, from ovarian cancer, less than 10 weeks after her all clear & this post. It was also my step dad, Marks birthday, bless him.
She came home where Mark, my sisters & I & also some visits from nurses & carers cared for her for 6 weeks as she deteriorated in front of our eyes. We were lucky to spend time with her, she became more frustrated, couldn’t eat & was eventually stuck to her chair in the living room unable to move. We are grateful to Helen’s Trust who provided her with this.
My mum kept her humour until the end one of my favourite memories is one of the doctors leaving the house on the Monday she passed away, “See you on Thursday Mel”. As the door closed, without hesitation she said “Thursday? I’ll be f***ing dead by Thursday”. My step dad & I laughed & cried but we didn’t think she would be.
On that sad day she passed away but was with her husband, 3 daughters & sister telling her how much we loved her.
We also believed that as her ovaries were not there, how could she get ovarian cancer. Even without ovaries we learnt that it can grow on your lining & unlike many other cancers, you can get ovarian cancer even after your ovaries have been removed.
We were told that the checks were “lip service” & provided very little help in finding a tumour. We looked for someone to blame, but really it’s very difficult to detect, especially early so I pride myself on sharing the symptoms whenever I can. Please see your doctor if you have
- Feeling full after eating
- Stomach pain
- Needing to pee more often
These can all be symptoms of very minor things, but better to be safe than sorry.
“Only 46% of women diagnosed with ovarian cancer in England and Wales survive their disease for five years or more. This is compared with 85% of men with prostate cancer and 87% of women with breast cancer.” (Ovarian Cancer Action data)
My mum passed away at 54.
I love technology & how what’s app will allow me to keep all of my mums messages forever. But whenever I’m sad I read through them. This is the last one she ever sent me. I don’t think she’d mind me sharing, but how can you be sad when you read this as your final message from your mum…
She was amazing. She had flaws like us all, but who wants to remember them. She was my mum, the best mum in the world, my bestie & I’m going to be that for my girls!