Cancer: Walking Through The Fire

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My Name is Victoria.  I live in Alabama with my daughter Elizabeth and our dog Jiggie.  No, I am not a natural southern girl but don’t hold that against me.  The past eight years I have been forged like steel…burned by fire and twisted into my present identity.  Who am I?  To answer that I have to tell you who I was eight years ago.  I was a teacher living in Montana with my husband.  I was pregnant with my sweet daughter, Elizabeth.  It was my first pregnancy and we were happy.  I remember the day when I told my husband that we were having a baby.  We had tried for three years and now it had finally happened.  I love children and teaching was all I ever wanted to do.  However, by the time I was entering my second trimester I was too tired to get out of bed.  I thought it must just be the pregnancy but other things were happening too.  I was dizzy a lot.  I had pounding headaches and my vision was really off.  I mentioned how I felt to my doctor and she ran some tests.  She performed a pretty thorough examination which included checking my breast.  There is was…I hadn’t even noticed it.  My breast were already sore and I just thought it must be the pregnancy.  It wasn’t.  The biopsy results: Stage III breast cancer!  I went home that evening and told my husband that I had breast cancer.  As if that wasn’t bad enough, my husband’s response was far more than I could have ever expected.  He said we needed to abort the baby!  I couldn’t do that.  My doctor told me that treatment would make it nearly impossible to protect my baby…she mentioned abortion too.  I made up mind before leaving her office that I was keeping my child.  I never dreamed my husband would disagree. This was suppose to be a wonderful time for us…we were going to have a baby.  All of a sudden everything changed.  I couldn’t work.  I quit my job.  My husband left us.  Wow…that really sucked!  You never know how strong you are until you have to be strong.  I have an amazing friend who moved me to Alabama to live with her.  I was a mess and she was my angel.  After my daughter was born…I filed for divorce from my husband.  Yeah…he had a great health plan.  I felt he owed me that! It hasn’t been easy and it’s not suppose to be.  I had cancer…but here is what Cancer taught me.  I am strong, I am a fighter, I can survive having the man I love walk out of my life.  He was afraid and I understand that…but I was devastated.  I’m the one who had cancer!  It took one look in my daughter’s beautiful eyes to show me how much God loved me.  As of today… I am cancer free!  I am teaching again and growing my own vegetables.  Nobody could have told me that I would be a girl who loves playing in the dirt.  Each day is my blessing.  My daughter is my miracle and I am so proud of who I have become.  Walking through fire…will change you.  It changed me.