Candy's Cancer Conundrum

Good afternoon everyone,

This is my first time to the website, first time to the forum and first time hearing that horrible word 'Cancer'.

Two weeks ago I went in for a pap smear as i had a gut feeling that i "wasn't right". It wasn't anything that i could specifically put my finger on and was more a case that there was this horrible feeling that something wasn't right. I had more discharge than normal and had to start wearing pantyliners. I had never worn them before however am 31 this year and attributed it to the body growing older and changing. I've never had children but somehow i thought it must be my body and ignored that horrible feeling something wasn't right. Then came the rust coloured discharge and bleeding between periods. Again, i never felt sick, or in pain. I never had a fever, and it didn't strike me as particularly odd. I woke up one morning with this sick feeling of dread in my stomach. I spoke with a friend and i said that i couldn't explain it and felt like I was being followed and chased by something horrible that was waiting to strike me down. Again, i brushed this aside and had an appointment with my beautician. During our session we ended up talking about different abnormalities clients have come in with (she does waxing) and she mentioned patients with a lot of sexual diseases not even knowing they had them. I wasn't worried about this as I honestly can't remember the last time i was sexually active as I'm studying medicine and as much as i would love someone in my life, haven't found the time. You would think as someone who is studying medicine and someone who understands the body, i would have thought different....


Two weeks ago i woke up in desperation and needed to go to the doctors. I couldn't tell you why but everything in me screamed "PAPSMEAR". I went and wasn't suprised when the doctor attempted to do the smear and i started to bleed horribly. She said that she had barely touched the cervix when it became extremley irritated, commenced bleeding, was quite firm and didn't look right. Within a week I had been diagnosed with cancer and referred to a gynelogical oncologist for a colposcopy and biopsy. During the colposcopy and the biopsy the oncologist confirmed it was cancer and i was also referred off for an MRI. 

The MRI along with the biopsy confirmed cancer. It is a 2-3cm length/width/diameter tumour that has extended past the cervix into the surrounding organs however at this stage has somehow missed the lympth glands. At this stage I am in the "lets get you to see as many people as possible and throw as many options as possible at you to confuse the hell out of you stage". As the oncologist recieved the confirmation at 4pm on Friday she has advised that early this week I will recieve a call from the cancer centre, herself, a fertility/reproductive specialist (because at 31, its probably a good idea to save some eggs) and a range of other people. 

The options provided to me have been a radical hysterecomy or doses of radiation and chemo. The treatment outcome is the same only with radiation/chemo i will likely go into menopause however with the radical hysterecomy whilst i wont need chemo/radiation it does mean that i will have scarr tissue and if they miss some of the cells, apparently the side effects of radation and chemo with scar tissue is a lot worse.

It's only been two weeks (well, really one week since i heard "cancer" and started talking about treament possibilities and 24 hours since the call came through on "this is what you need to do treatment option wise <insert a whole heap of medical jargon here> but we will arrange 111010101010 appointments for you first". Ive gone from sadness, to numbness to feeling normal. Its amazing how in the space of a week so many people can leave your side, let you down and you really start to learn the real lesson of who real friends are and who is just along for the easy ride. The anger and hatred i am feeling at some people is horrible. Today i started to wonder if this is some kind of lesson or some kind of point for me; that i did something wrong or because im angry about it, that i deserve it more?

I recognise thats messed up thinking to the extreme. It's just where i am at. Close friends and family know and i've started a support page on FB (a closed, secret page only for those closest). I intend to keep going with my studies and am trying to live life as normal as possible. I never expected this and never imagined at 31 to be asking myself questions like "What happens if i find someone and get married and want children?" How do i make these decisions when i dont even have someone in my life? What if imake the wrong decision and all of a sudden when i can't have children or need to adopt, regret it? Do i feel less of a woman minus my organs? Is it better to have chemo/radiation and avoid surgery or have the surgery and hope for the best? My gut tells me surgery, and if i have learnt anything its listen to my gut.

How did you stop from going mental? What were the little things you did for yourself and others that helped you through this? 

Much love, hope and joy to you all.


Hi H

So sorry you have had the dreaded CC diagnosis. Mine will be a year ago this coming Tuesday and yes, it does shake you to the core.  You certainly find out who your real friends are - the ones that I thought would be there for me did a disappearing act!  That said, there were many more that were fantastic and incredibly supportive.

You will see from my notes below that I was stage 1b1 and I had a Wertheim's Hysterectomy.  I wasn't given the choice but in retrospect I'm glad that's what the treatment was.  I was lucky that it hadn't spread so I didn't need chemo or radiotherapy.  A year later and I'm doing pretty good, the bod recovers quicker than you think it will.

Regarding coping at the start, a very good friend recommended guided meditation and listening to calming cds.  It worked for me!  I bought a selection and even took them into hospital with me.  They were a godsend in the time before I went in.  I also read loads of books that I downloaded.  At first I couldn't concentrate but it got better as time went on.

Good luck with your journey and with whatever decision you make.  You will find lots of support from this site and 'meet' some wonderful ladies who will be there when you need any help or advice or just want to talk.

Hugs, Cheryl,xx 

Hi there Hitoshiama

So glad you joined us! I am so sorry to hear your news, but please take heart, there are loads and loads of us here who know exactly what you are going through and even if you don't get heaps of responses from the other women here, they have read your post and are thinking about you and caring about you. Not everyone posts a response, but that does not mean that you are alone.

Your story sounds quite similar to mine. I am not qualified to advise you and I am significantly older than you are so your decisions are more complex than mine were. It may be a good idea to ask your team what they think the likelihood is that if you have a hysterectomy that your ovaries will fail and you will go into menopause anyway. I don't wish to alarm you but I have read somewhere that this is often the case. If they agree, then go for the whole lot; hysterectomy as well as chemo-radiation because as far as I understand it, this combination gives you the best possible chance of survival and to be brutally frank, hanging on to the hope of motherhood whilst risking your life makes no sense.

How to stop going mental? Promise yourself never to regret your decisions. Never allow yourself to get caught up in the What if? and If only. If you feel that you trust your gut feling then go with it. And don't allow yourself to think that this is some kind of lesson or 'payback' for some mistake you made before.

In an attempt to be slightly light-hearted, it doesn't sound as though it's going to have a huge impact on your current sex-life, so that's one less thing to worry about.

Go well, and let us know what happens.

With love



You have all made me smile (and laugh as well!). Today i have been a mess. I hate EVERYTHING! I hate cancer. I hate studying. I hate people ( i really, really, REALLY hate people!!) and if i hear one more person who hasn't had cancer and hasn't gone through this that i will be fine and i can "win", I think i might strangle them. Lord, i know they mean well and i know that its hard for them to hear but honestly, I will 'win' against cancer? How can ANYONE win with a cancer diagnosis? Winning would be never, ever having to EVER hear that word in relation to you, your friends or your loved ones EVER. Winning would be a 100% guaranteed cure. So many people are so well meaning, but i wonder if they stop to consider what they are saying or if they are just stuck on repeat? I had a friend say to me the other day (who knew what was happening and knew i was going to an appointment) "have fun". I stopped and actually said "Yes, i will have fun having a piece of me chopped out for review". He stopped and said "oh yeah, sorry, i didn't think about it". Kept typing on his phone and then went, "Anyway, gotta go. Have fun". Yes...again. AGAIN. 

I am so scared that this current anger will consume me. And the fatigue.. it's only been a week and i feel like i haven't slept in years. I am falling asleep in the afternoons and trying to keep myself awake. I am still trying to keep up with my studies, with life, with being a person... it just feels.... different? Strange? 

How do you keep going?

Oh Hitoshiama,

Please don't hate people, they can be so funny! It can be incredibly difficult to find the correct words when speaking with someone close to you who is going through a terrible, terrible thing. I have a friend who's only child was murdered and boy did I say the wrong stuff all of the time. It's just impossible to get your head into the right place, so don't be too hard on them. Later on you will be able to laugh quietly to yourself when they say stuff like "You look so well!" Or when they grasp your hand in an intense and sincere way. You know exactly what they are thinking even though they are doing their level best not to say it.

The fatigue comes from the intense emotional strain you are under, and if you are very tearful with it you'll probably get headaches too. But try not to let those bits get you down. When the initial shock dissipates you will find it easier to take it all in your stride, you will find a 'new normal', you might even find some of it hilarious, which is a great way of dealing with the whole experience.

So do as the nice man said, and 'Have Fun!'

Lots and lots of love



ThIs made me laugh also. How incredibly patronising it is when people say you will fight this and you will win. Well it's not a fair fight in my opinion and it doesn't care who/what/why. I really struggle when people say that to me, I am currently going through chemotherapy and lost my hair they have no idea what a fight is. As for staying sane well its a difficult one, I just try to do my normal things and not allow it to consume me, I tell myself to "stop it" when I have bad thoughts. Give myself a wee shake. It's soo difficult when you feel like everyone else's life continues as normal and you are living this nightmare that no one unless they've been in the same situation can EVER understand and that's what I've grown to realise they can't understand so they say things that aren't appropriate or seem to belittle it. It does get easier and becomes a way of life almoat.  I'm so sorry you are here posting because of a cc diagnoses but it's so inspiring when you see the strength of the women on here and that so many of them have won this fight. Take care, Charlene xx

Hi beautiful ladies,

The last two days have been much more positive ones. I decided Sunday night to give myself a kick up the bum. I have been through a lot in my life and am normally a very positive and happy person despite circumstances. Why should cancer be any different really? Sometimes taking a new perspective on things is what you need simply to be able to get out of bed and so i've spent the last two days being "normal" and actually feeling ok. I've got an appointment with the fertility specialist this Wednesday so they are moving things along quite quickly. I've also started to get pain and bloating. Not sure if this is normal but last night i felt like i was 10000000000 months pregnant.

Hi Hitoshiama,

Glad to hear you have settled into the new approach. Good luck with the specialist today, I'll be thinking of you.

Let us know how you get on.

Lots of love



I find that people are really shocked (possibly even disappointed) that I look ok. It is the first thing that everyone has commented on when they've visited over the last few weeks! I do consider this a fight or a battle, but that probably because I don't know what else to call it.

i don't have children and my consultant is very concerned about preserving the chance for me to do that in the future, but I would rather be alive, so yes these are tough choices, but I don't want to have a child and then risk not seeing them grow up.

ruthie x

My beautiful ladies; my journey is on a rapid sprint at the moment and i'm already heading into surgery this Wednesday with 10101010385493023984594302192384 appointments all lined up in a row. I'm feeling quite positive at the moment however i was wondering, as we progress through our journey (obviously even though its only been three weeks, i'm still newly diagnosed however i'm now moving into the treatment stage) do we move our post to another part of the forum? Or do we start all over again in a seperate forum? How have you found it best to transfer down through the forum stages as you move forward in your diagnosis, treatment, recovery etc?

Hello again Hitoshiama,

So glad to hear you have been put on fast-track, it leaves less time for thinking those thoughts which don't help. It really doesn't matter one little bit where you post on this forum. I'm three years into my journey but I post in Newly Diagnosed because I think I can be most help here. It may not be a bad idea to read through some of the other forums and see where you feel most comfortable and where you find the greatest number of kindred spirits, but if you move somewhere else, please let me know, I'd hate to lose track of you.

Best wishes for Wednesday!!



hi beautiful friends!

Haven't forgotten you, just getting ready for surgery tomorrow. 1 and 1.5 ovaries being removed in preparation for chemo. Hopefully see you all again on the other side of General Anaestetic! xxoo