Say the words “ovarian cancer” to a group of women and they will fall silent–for good reason. Most of them probably know someone–a dear friend, their own mother, a neighbor–who was lost to this “Silent Killer.” Silence is what kills us, and it is about time we upped the chatter. My publisher, Avon Books has teamed up with the Ovarian Cancer National Alliance and designated six of their September titles as Kiss & Teal books to help get the word out. But more about them in a moment.
As I said, it seems like every woman knows (or will know) someone who has been diagnosed with ovarian cancer. I have a dear friend who was–thankfully, she has overcome her cancer and is doing great. But it struck me as I started writing this blog a week or so ago that I had never asked her what prompted her to go to the doctor. How foolish is that?
We should all be asking each other this one simple question: How did you know? And then make sure we listen and if we suspect anything, we act.
So when I saw her this past weekend, I asked her, and she said she’d been having bloating and her clothes stopped fitting and it seemed odd. But after some reflection, she sent me this email, and I am sharing it so all you can hear the answer as well:
I was thinking about your ovarian cancer question and wanted to say a little more. Other than being able to feel the tumor, I did have other symptoms. Feeling bloated, pressure, frequent urination, which all got worse over about 3 weeks. I was feeling around my abdomen because of these symptoms, and that’s when I felt “something” and called my dr, if I hadn’t felt this mass though, I’m sure I would have put off going to the dr – thinking it was just a digestive issue, or that I was gaining some weight, or that it was all due to getting older, etc.
Good luck with your blog! It is good to spread the word. Being alert for signs and symptoms so it can hopefully be caught early is important. There’s lots of other things that can be going on with women which can cause similar symptoms which makes things tricky. So it’s best to get anything out of the ordinary (anything persistent and unusual) checked out. My drs were great (even though they weren’t thinking it was cancer) they took all the right “just in case” steps. And really I was just very lucky.
This is such an important cause–the symptoms are there–and we as women have to listen to our bodies and then heed the warnings. I know with busy lives it is easy to put off our own care, but it is essential that we seek treatment as soon as we suspect there might be a problem.
Please take the next 60 seconds of your life and watch this video featuring Tessa Dare. And then share the link to this blog (http://elizabethboyle.com/blog/?p=1474) with as many of your friends as you can. If you have any of these symptoms, get an appointment with your doctor as soon as possible.
Now here is what I am going to do: The first 10 readers who send me proof that they have bought all six of the Kiss & Teal books, (Click here to find all the books) and I will send you six autographed books from my backlist. What is proof? A scan of your receipt. A pic of you with your books. Forward an order receipt. Just show me you’ve bought all six titles and I’ll double that with six of my classics. You can find my email on my Contact page. Now even if you already have my books, think about this: the holidays are coming and wouldn’t a handful of autographed books make great, quick gifts? So get your proof in quick and not only will you help spread the word, but you’ll double your stash.