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To Cancer and Back: One Mama’s Miracle

Stories of cancer survivors
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One more reason to wake up grateful every day

Mama of 3 Rowena shares her very moving, humbling and inspiring story.

To look at me now you would never guess that someone like me went through breast cancer in 2009. At the time of my diagnosis I was teaching yoga full time and a Mom of two toddlers. Ryan, my son, was 4 and Tayler my daughter was 2. I looked like anyone you run into a million times in your day.

One day I recognised I was putting my hand in my bra constantly. I was trying to see what was rubbing against my skin. To explain the way it felt it was like I had dropped toast crumbs into my bra and need to get them out. It was uncomfortable, bothersome.

If you have been a Mom then you know that you’re busy. I finally booked in to see my doctor and she couldn’t tell what it was. She sent me to a specialist who sent me for a CT scan. Then another doctor to do a biopsy. The whole time I kept thinking it’s nothing.

Cancer survivor stories

I was in a grocery store picking up just enough milk to feed my kids cereal the next morning as we were booked on our summer vacation to see the family in Canada. That’s when the call came. My doctor said it was cancer. My mind went blank. What does that mean? I had to ask, “I’m booked on a family trip. Am I going?” No was the response. I stayed and started what I can only describe as my trip down the cancer hole. I had 2 different scans to see if it had traveled to bones or organs. Both came back clear. That was the first moment I thought I might get through this alive.


By the second week of my diagnosis my cancer was removed. My whole breast was taken off as they found pre-cancer cells surrounding it. I had a port placed into my chest, as my veins were too unreliable. I started an aggressive program of 16 rounds of chemotherapy. The first 4 were delivered every 2 weeks and the last 12 were a lighter dose delivered every week. Cancer lite I called it. I had to give myself shots at one point due to my white blood cells dropping too low. Then came the 6 weeks of daily radiation appointments in Abu Dhabi.

It was suggested that we harvest some eggs in case we wanted more children. We decided against it. My Doctor told me that it would be a miracle to conceive any more children as my advanced age with the amount of chemo and radiation would make it impossible to conceive another child.


It wasn’t even 4 months after my treatments ended that I found out I was pregnant with our daughter Morgan. Our little miracle Morgan has just celebrated her 5th birthday. She is perfect. Cancer has shown me how short life can be. I also see how everyday is a blessing and every moment a treasure.

Featured image via Pinterest

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