I have been rather reflective as of late. It is interesting to me that symptoms of this cancer did not begin to surface until I was in the hands of a specialist. I wonder, was there just more of an awareness at that point? It that why I began to acknowledge that maybe what I thought was ‘gas’, wasn’t.
These days I feel like I am in a perpetual state of premenstrual puffiness. That lovely bloated feeling, you know? And with it comes the lower back pain associated with it. During the run last night with my group I began to experience said lower back pain and couldn’t finish the last five minutes and just walked it out.
Still what a fabulous run! We went down to Spanish Banks and ran the trails. Talk about being in a divine place. The lush forest carried the scent of the ocean breeze. The smell of the earth mixed with blooming foliage infused the senses.
I have gone back to the walk/runs pace group for the time being. I don’t want to exhaust my energy and just want to maintain my fitness level. So basically I am low key these day. One thing I am doing is really paying attention to my physical body and what it’s telling me. I need to listen to my intuition a bit more closely as well.
I had a feeling at the beginning of the year that something was ‘off’. There was that part of me that soothed things over. Perhaps it’s the post-menopausal stuff I pondered at first? I told myself that the bloating I began to experience in early March 2013 was likely a result of perhaps having a few too many beer on the weekend. In truth though, I had cut down my consumption considerably as I was in training. So I attributed it to gas. My grandmother used that explanation for most every ailment I had as a child.
“It’s just gas, dear. It will pass.” She would then make some tea.
Mind you I didn’t get sick all that often as a child. I can remember picking cherries from the tree in our backyard and eating so many of the damn things that yes, I had gas and whole lot of other issues as a result. And if you know anything about cherries, you’ll know the the issues I speak of. Those were good cherries! Still gorging oneself on anything is not advised.
The point is that we need to listen and not make excuses. No, I’ve not had major symptoms that come with cancer. It has been very subtle in its manifest. I could attribute much of what I have experienced to my age. I could tell you it was the beer, just gas or both. I could tell you that the body goes through cycles and can’t be high energy all the time. I could say that I’ve been working so hard that perhaps I was burning the candle at both ends and that was my body’s way of telling me to slow down.
But at the end of the day there was that little voice that nibbled at the edge of consciousness stating that something was not right. That voice became louder in February. It stands to reason that training for a 1/2 marathon and following a demanding workout schedule and regimenting what I was eating and when, should have resulted in the original goal of optimum health. Yet halfway through training the body began to feel exhausted. The energy was draining, the stamina and endurance were faltering a bit.
I think that was the key. When I trained for the Coho which is 14KM, I got stronger. My stamina and endurance increased and I continued navigating my weight-loss on a successful level. I was also enjoying a few pints on the weekend as well, probably more so than with the 1/2 marathon.
Still I went through the typical stage of denial. I needed to rest more. Roll back my social life a little more. And I did. Yet still, the energy continued to wane.
After my diagnosis and after coming terms with this thing, I got to thinking how little I know about my own body. I have been post-menopausal for about 5 years now. What type of things should I look out for? Everything is generalized. Add to that an infinite number of variables and is it any wonder that we don’t think we are ill.
Uterine cancer is caused by an over abundance of Estrogen in the system. I got to thinking about the fact that I still have hot flashes and have been going through and experiencing menopausal symptoms for the last 9 1/2 years.
I did ask the question as to whether women who had a prolonged menopausal period were more inclined to contract uterine cancer. I was told no.
So now I wonder what it is that causes the fluctuation of the hormones. I never had HRT (Hormone Replacement Therapy). I believed very firmly in letting the body do it’s thing. Were my symptoms extreme during this time? I still wonder if that couldn’t well be a clue to this whole thing.
There has to be something that is a little more conclusive in giving us an idea that we may be at risk for this type of cancer. I know we all hold cancer cells in us. So what is the trigger? What activated this particular imbalance?
I will be following this very closely and really listening to and recording what my body is experiencing. Perhaps this will help. I will be working with the BC Cancer Agency after the fact as well. They asked if I would be a tissue bank volunteer and if I can assist them in understanding this cancer then by all means.
I acknowledge the only indicator which occurred late last year was two days of spotting. Again I attributed this to the whole menopausal thing and yes, I did go to my doctor which resulted in the pelvic ultrasound being done and hence discovery. Thinking back on this now with an awareness of what is occurring within this body of mine what may well have been the symptom is that I began to experience the physicality I once did just prior to the onset of my cycle. It wasn’t very evident at first, but in hindsight, I do recognize this. A subtle shift that had not been there previously.
The most telling though has been my intuition.
From this perhaps we can shed some light on this thing. I would love to hear from other women regarding their symptoms as well. Let’s see if we can come up with some common experiences that may be an indicator.
Have a great day everyone!