November is Stomach Cancer Awareness Month, thanks to my friend, State Representative Ann Bollin.
It has been a year and 3 months since I was diagnosed with stomach cancer and 5 months since my treatments have ended. This journey was tough and I was lucky to survive, unlike Ann’s father who unfortunately passed away from stomach cancer when she was young. Although it is heartbreaking, I believe that is what made Ann and my friendship so strong and why God allowed us to serve together. She helped me every day at session and has become such a dear friend.
But as legislators we both thought it was important to take these experiences and advocate for people to go get screened early. As technology develops and full recovery becomes a more likely outcome, we encourage everyone to not wait and schedule an appointment with their doctor! The earlier you catch it the better your chances are of survival.
I was fortunate to have the best support network possible by my friends, family, and the incredibly amazing doctors at Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute. I am now cancer-free and I thank my team for helping me through it all. I hope my story has given others hope and they too will go get tested. Keep fighting and continue looking for the right doctors.