Monday, April 9, 2012


At 38 years of age, I received some startling news about my health, and it wasn't good. While living in Hawaii, after a routine female health-care exam at my local Planned Parenthood, I received a follow up call urging me to come back to discuss my lab results.

Healthcare in Hawaii
I had regularly received pap smears, from the time I was 20, however I had not ever been called back to discuss lab results. Never having used Planned Parenthood for a pap smear, or obtaining female health-care in Hawaii before, I just assumed they followed a different procedure.
I obliged the clinic by stopping by the next day on my lunch break. As Planned Parenthood was only a block from my office, I strolled unconcerned; assuming I had simply forgotten to sign some paperwork. A counselor greeted me, and compassionately informed me that my lab tests came back positive for 5th stage cervical cancer.
My Death Sentence
Unaware of the stages of cancer (assuming there could be hundreds) and confident about my robust health, taking vitamins daily, I was not expecting what followed. The counselor informed me I had 2 months left to live! I was shaken to the core, and perplexed because I did not look or feel sick.
It was recommended that I get a follow-up appointment with my doctor (which I did) to start treatment immediately. I requested a second opinion. At that time lab results, when rushed, took a week turn-around time to be flown off-island, while I waited in deep depression.
I Sold Everything
During the longest week of my life, I cashed out my savings account, sold my household goods, and bought a one-way ticket home to Southern California, where I planned to die near the rest of my family. Church friends prayed over me whenever I ran into them, yet I just wanted to be alone and pout.

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