The Ottumwa Courier

October 26, 2012

Cancer Stories: A fight to win


OTTUMWA — Editor’s Note: The Courier asked cancer survivors and/or family members to share their stories during October, which is Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

A few people have written to tell of their experiences.

We thank all the people who participated. As many of you said, you want others to know about the experience and to always have hope.

Their stories will run often this month.

Sept. 23, 2005 was the worst day of my life. I had been to the doctors and results were back — it’s breast cancer. That same day I scheduled surgery for the following Friday. I wanted to get this over with.

Sept. 30, 2005, was surgery day. I couldn’t think about what I was losing — just that this was the start of my fight for life. A couple of weeks to heal then back in for one-day surgery to install my infuse port. Then came chemo.

Like a lot of people I had heard of chemo but never thought much about it. Over the next few months I learned all I could and more than I wanted. In January of 2006, I developed pneumonia and spent a week in the hospital. Then back for more chemo. Glad to have the chemo over. I have to say it was not as bad as I had feared; it was much worse in my imagination.

Now it’s seven years later and I am still cancer free and I thank God every day.

LuAnn Pilcher