reddingfemale's Journey with Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma (NHL)

Survivor: Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma (NHL)

Patient Info: Finished active treatment more than 5 years ago, Diagnosed: about 21 years ago, Female, Age: 55, Stage IV

  1. 1
    over 4 years ago
    reddingfemale's Avatar

    Diagnosed

    Oh No

    When I first started getting signs of being sick , I was under the impression I had pnemonia and would eventually kick being sick and I be fine . but, it would not go away I see people while shopping or taking my daughter to school at the time when she was only 4 years old and people would say " you look great but, in reality I was not doing great. I had lost a lot of weight and feeling tired and out of sorts , I began to get the feeling I was coming down with something , well, at the time I was married and my husband would be working out of town . I started to get a fever and it was not going down then on top of the fever I had trouble breathing , then I lost sleep and then that is when I decided to tell someone I was not doing good . So I called my sister in-law who was a nurse and she said you gotta get to the doctore . well , the doctor at the evevery day clinic said it was pnemonia and prescribed some meds for me to take well , I took them but, they were so huge that I could not swallow them then crushing them did not work either not to mention the nasty taste of the meds but, still then I could not swallow not even water . So then finally my mother in -law took me to my regular doctore where he suggested a doctor down town Dr. Dayton he took one look at me and new exactly what was going on and then I realized my worst nightmare CANCER , after Seeing Dr. Dayton I was told to go to the E.R. right away , well , all I remember is getting admitted into the hospital and everything after that was a blurr. eventually my husband was told to make arrangements I was not going to make it and call my family never the less to say they got to the hospital and I was sitting up in bed eating. It was a miracle they kept saying and sure enough I was. I remember my mom and sisters sitting in the room visiting me when this lady with a bag of wigs come in and my mom to ther amazement asked what is that all about and not knowing what was happening to me my sisters explained I had cancer , at the time what was the chances that I would have cancer when at that time 3 of four woman would have cancer and how amazing that i had three sisters battling cancer or had battled at the same time, only difference is I had Non Hodgkins Lymphoma and they all three had breast cancer no matter what we all had a long road to go, Well, eventually I did get through what was ahead of me, I still don't remember much but, what I do remember is visits from friends and family , phone calls and doctors coming in and out of the room and a coupld of nurses one a big burley woman who bathed me and another who was a blessing as well as a angel her name was tammy and a nurse named Kim who preped me for my chemo treatments , . then there were my radiation treatments , I got through them pretty good again I don't remember much but, I do remember a radiologist Todd he was pretty nice but, what i did not like is that he had to tatoo me, I did not like any markings on my body but, of course i had to have them to direct the radiation to the spot where my cancer was , I now have a lot of memories but, the most lingering is or was my three little dots and green at that . well eventually I got better and by July 24 I was in remission after a long bout of chemo and radiation which started on December 6 1995 and ended some 8 months later. Now today 2012 I am cured, but, with that good news I have since lost all my sisters , my mom and two brothers to cancer my sisters Mary to breast cancer , Ruth to Lung cancer / breast cancer , my sister nana to colon / pacreatic cancer after surviving breast cancer and my mom to uterine cancer. Amazing as it is I survived the longest and continue to be very healthy , with a few bouts of colds and a ear infection recap of pnemomia otherwise , I am blessed to see my daughter grow into the woman I am very proud of . she is working, going to be graduating college and be a teacher and with that has a man in her life that will one day marry her .

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  2. 2
    over 4 years ago
    reddingfemale's Avatar

    Swallowing problems

    Side Effects

    I had problems swallowing , breathing , sleeping as well as loss of weight and other countless things I don't remember , I had to sit up in the corner of my daughters bed and sleep , cause if i had laid down I would have died from no air getting through to my lungs. 2012 : I am losing my teeth and still manage to eat but, can not chew as well if I had all my teeth.

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  3. 3
    over 4 years ago
    reddingfemale's Avatar

    Remission

    Celebration

    Finding out I was in remission and doing so much better I was able to return to home but, not till I recooped at my mother and father in-laws home or the remainer of time i went to the doctors for my treatments while my husband continued to work out of town. my sisters and mom came to see me and visited me bringing me gifts and spending time with me , my sister ruth brought me clothes and jewelry to look nice and my sister Mary bought me a wig for when my hair fell out , well I had a great time looking for that special due and would you know it , I did ! I always wanted a hair style like Dolly Parton well, being I am hispanic blond hair would not due, but, I found a black wig and I was set . My mother in-law would say man I wish I could set my hair and have it all styled when I got up in the morning . Once I got better i was able to attend family functions out side the house. first one was a friends wedding Tad and Brenda's wedding. i had my wig but, boy I felt so good and looked pretty good I have to say considering I had a wig on. it could be warm at times under the wig but, at least I can function out side the house without anyone knowing what I was going through.

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  4. 4
    over 4 years ago
    reddingfemale's Avatar

    Fertility

    Loss

    I had a lot of losses in my life but, being able to have a child made the world of difference in my life , my daughter Sarah was my biggest joy , If now for her I think I not went on or had a strong hold on the whole situation of dealing with cancer and what I had to do and go through . but, having cancer took a lot from me but, not what was most important my daugther because if not for her I not had any kids at all. well, i have one and that is more than enough for me , I am totally blessed to have had her , I lost my dignity , my hair ( which is my world next to Sarah) , and my baby making machine as i call it . but, I have also found what is most important is God if not for Him I would not be who I am today. but, evenutally I had divorced my husband and went on with life but, we remain friends even if he is married twice after me . I know no matter what I have him to be there for Sarah when she needs him should anythng happen to me.

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