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To this day, I am grateful for this blessing in disguise. And I am grateful that I listened to my inner voice. We know our own body better than anyone else ever will. It's important to honor that.

My Personal Path-My Crisis

Between December 2005 and early May 2006, I thought I was doing well. In fact, I was feeling pretty proud of myself. I certainly had demonstrated my ability to keep an open heart as I juggled multiple tasks, made numerous decisions, and performed my job, all while remaining relatively sane.

It seems, however, that Mother Nature knew differently and the only way she could get my attention was to hit me with a 2x4.

One early morning, two weeks after saying good-bye to my brother, I awoke in horrendous pain. The pain was so bad that I couldn't even visualize getting out of bed and to the car for a ride to the hospital. My husband called 911 and off we went. After a number of hours in the ER and an uneventful CT scan, I was sent home with a diagnosis of gastritis and medications for both pain and nausea.

Four hours later, waking from a long nap, I asked my husband to bring me the phone. Thankfully, I listened to my body, knew something was terribly wrong and insisted on going back to the hospital instead of taking another pain pill. I called the hospital's Chief of OB/GYN, a colleague, to tell him I was on my way.

Hospitals don't like to see patients return to the ER on the same day so I was met by a sizable group of providers focused on discovering the real problem. After doing an ultrasound, one of the simplest and least expensive of all tests, the diagnosis was clear. I had a necrotic, torsioned ovary and I had bled out into my abdomen. More than 25% of my blood had leaked into my abdomen. I could have easily died. I was whisked away for an emergency hysterectomy during which an oncologist discovered what turned out to be borderline ovarian cancer.

To this day, I am grateful for this blessing in disguise. And I am grateful that I listened to my inner voice. We know our own body better than anyone else ever will. It's important to honor that.

My DadMy MomMy BrotherClosing Thoughts