Please enjoy the eleventh story in our series, “The Loving Kindness Project”:
My discovery of my breast cancer happened by accident while I was at work. I just suddenly decided to do a test on my breast and that is when I found a lump.
I immediately called and made an appointment to see the Doctor for the next day. He did a biopsy and told me he will call with the result. I was ready to deal with whatever it was, good or bad.
When the results came I was told by the doctor that it was cancer. I took a deep breath.
The first person I told about my cancer diagnosis was my son Trevor: I
could hear the sadness in his voice when I told him. He said he would come to pick me up. I told him “No, I am going to buy my ground food to cook.” The second person I called was my sister in Grenada—she started to cry. I had to tell her to stop before she made me cry while I was in Town. All the while she is telling me in-between crying that she will help me with the surgery. When I was coming through the tract that leads to my house my son and I met. I could see the pain in his face when he asked me how I felt. I started to tell him everything the doctor told me. When I got home I called my cousin to tell her and asked her to tell my aunt. Later my aunt called me crying. She was so overcome that she hung up on me, but called later to apologize.
I went back to the doctor with my son and a friend to talk about the next steps. On the 17 November 2006 I had my surgery and it was a success. The first person I saw when I opened my eyes was my son Trevor. I came home the next day and everyone was asking why I was home, they thought I was in the hospital for surgery. When I told them I already had the procedure, they couldn’t believe it because I didn’t look like I just had surgery. Even my best friend Marina Hinds couldn’t believe it.
Going through the treatment was rough, but I learned how to deal with it. I had my ups and downs, but with the love of God and the support of my family and friends I am here today happy and alive.
I would like to first thank God for his love and mercy. When you believe in God he gives you strength. I also want to thank my children and family, especially my daughter-in-law Jose Patterson; John Philgence in St. Lucia, Anne Jordon, Trevor Clarke, Kay Clarke, Rosaline Edmund, Anne Thorn, Cecelia and John in Canada, Marina Hinds, Henderson Hinds, Rose Clarke, and my Doctor. I am thankful to the late Lynda Brooks for introducing me to Cancer Support Services (CSS). At Cancer Support Services Aubrey Blacket, Debbie Gittens, Jan Lynton and The Victorious Ladies gave me continuous support throughout my journey and for that I thank them.
I believe going through cancer made me a stronger person. I managed the stress of each challenge along my journey by facing situations head on and taking action, rather than worrying. How I managed to deal with my cancer gave strength to friends of mine who received a diagnosis of cancer after me.