I’ve Got A Story To Tell…

fb_img_1481514143347.jpgI’ve Got A Story To Tell…

I wasn’t going to say anything. I was going to carry this secret of mine until the very end, only letting my family and a few choice friends take this journey with me. But then I thought about it. What if I cheated myself out of the chance to change someone’s life? To educate someone on something they knew nothing about? Bring awareness to something that is rare and misunderstood? Or worse, what if I could have encouraged a doctor to dig a little deeper and possibly find the cure that is needed? I didn’t want to look back one day and think, I could’ve been a part of the cure, and I could’ve helped someone. So, that’s why I’m choosing to tell my story now…

A year ago today, June 26, 2015, I got some news that changed me, my family and my best friends. After 4 months of an intense sickness and a major surgery, I was diagnosed with Carcinoid or NET (neuroendocrine tumors) Cancer in my small intestine. An estimate of about 12,000 individuals are diagnosed each year. NET’s are described as “Cancer in slow motion” and is thankfully not aggressive in a lot of cases but not all. My case it is not aggressive, but still detective. Many times, when trying to find the real cause, a patient, like myself, is misdiagnosed several times before getting a true, accurate diagnostic. In my case it took 4 long months, however, in some cases it can and has taken longer. November 10, NET Day is about spreading awareness in hopes to get doctors and physicians to consider NET as a possibility to get to an accurate diagnosis quicker. The most recognizable color for cancer is pink, but the color(s) for Carcinoid are Zebra Stripe and the mascot a Zebra. Just like our fingerprints no two zebras have the same stripes. Every NET Patient may have the same Cancer, but there are no two that are exactly the same, or have even had the same journey! As I join my dazzle of Zebras, I wear my stripes proudly to help get that word out for those who are going through the same thing I did in the beginning of my journey.

 

In the beginning I was scared of course. I mean anytime you hear the big” C” word the first thing you think is the worst possible thing you can possibly imagine. But I was scared that you guys would look at me different. You would see me as sickly or weak instead of strong and fearless as I’m often called. You’d think I was fragile instead of the fun loving “Reesie” you all know so well. I didn’t want you to be thinking “Is she okay?” watching my every move. I didn’t want you to be afraid because I was already terrified.

I also kept the secret because I didn’t want any negative rumors…

“Oh my God, did you hear? Cerise Jackson has cancer! Can you believe it?!”

“Well, I heard that….”

“Yo, lemme tell you what I JUST SAW on Reesie’s page…That’s CRAZY right!!

“Oh, well you know so-in-so had something like that and they died…”

 

A lifetime of gossiping, nosey, negative, non-praying individuals will make you think that way. I needed warriors, I needed positivity, I needed laughter, and smiles and joy. More than anything, I needed hugs and kisses and “I’m praying for you” and “Don’t give up” and “Keep fighting’s.” I needed my friends and family. Now that it has been a year of nothing but love and support from the strongest, loving, God-fearing, prayer warriors and believer’s I know, it doesn’t matter what kind of reaction I get from sharing my news. All that matters is that my Oncologist says that my scans show the tumors are getting smaller, and every visit is positive and I’m improving. I’m getting more and more energy every day and it’s getting easier and easier to get back to feeling like myself again. It’s giving me more courage to see this through to remission or NED as us Zebra’s call it. If that isn’t enough to shut out the nay-sayers then you don’t have the kind of faith I have grown. That’s why I was chosen to carry out this journey.

My family, Dr. Vallathucherry Harish and I have FULL confidence that I will see this through to NED (No Evidence of Disease). As I am “More than a Conqueror,” my family has dubbed me a Worthy Opponent for the journey I have set before me. I’ve often been called a Superwoman because of the strength people see in me. Well, Superwoman’s cape is been colored in Zebra prints. Armed with Joshua 1:9 and Romans 8:37 as my left and right hooks, I plan to KO Carcinoid Cancer. I aspire to be an inspiration. Especially so that I can set an example for my nieces, nephews, and Godchildren to look up to and follow. I choose to be a fighter, and nothing less, keeping a smile on my face at all times even when I don’t feel like smiling. You just never know what difference you might make in someone else’s heart that way. Hearing the word “Cancer” as a diagnosis is very scary. My goal is to help bring awareness about Carcinoid Cancer. That being said, I ask that continued prayers and positivity be the means for support. Thank you for your prayers, it does not go unappreciated.

 

With thanks and love,

Cerise Jackson

*Never Stop Smiling*

*If you would like to take this journey along with me, don’t be afraid to head over to my blog “Diary Of A Fighter“*fb_img_1481514143347.jpg

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