February 4, 2022 is World Cancer Day – a day for people to unite to share their stories, raise awareness, and provide education and action related to cancer. Below is a story shared by TFS customer and employee, Tonii Mattocks.
“As my remission of three years comes closer, I can’t help but reminisce about how crazy of a ride 2018/2019 was! You never really know how strong you are until you are forced to be strong.
After being diagnosed with Stage 3b Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and learning I was pregnant all within a week, I thought my life was over. Suddenly I had to choose between the life of my baby or me.
I was told by doctors that there was no chance of my baby to survive and to get an abortion, as well as that it might come down to choosing between me and the baby during birth. This came with so many questions, doubts and fears. Since I was one of very few women with this specific condition, no doctor in this area knew how, nor wanted to treat/care for me. I ended up having to travel down to the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan to set up initial treatment and find a doctor.
Being someone who has always strayed towards the natural/organic side of life, I knew straight off the bat that I didn’t want to go through chemotherapy, though I was told I would need to start as soon as possible. At the time, naturopathy was not a big thing, and was also EXTREMELY expensive and not covered by insurance. The initial appointment to meet with the doctor was $600 upfront, and I just did not have that kind of savings with a three-year-old at the time and just finishing my Esthetician schooling. I was at a stand still with what I was supposed to do.
At the end of the day, the only thing I cared about was making sure my baby was healthy. I didn’t even care about myself at this point. I eventually found a doctor who had seen this case in a few other women and set up a plan of action for me and the baby to BOTH survive! A plan was set to start chemo when I reached 23-weeks in my pregnancy to ensure that all of the baby’s essential organs were fully developed; heart, kidneys, liver, lungs and intestines.
I was prescribed quite a few medications to offset the side effects of the chemotherapy. Some of the side effects included mouth sores, nausea/vomiting, vertigo, weakness, diarrhea, skin irritation, fatigue and neuropathy, not to mention the steroids I had to take every now and then when my blood cell counts would go down. At the time, I had a caregiver who made me a THC:CBD tincture to use in place of these medications and I still swear by it to this day!
With chemo, I was guaranteed to get mouth sores, lose all my hair, and be highly nauseated after every chemo session. But when I took my tincture every day, it provided the boost in energy, attitude and strength I needed. It helped me through 8+ hours of five different medications being pumped through my chest every other Friday — one I called liquid death (it was red). I am not going to lie, chemo was HARD and very painful, but without my use of CBD, I know for a fact I would have been so much more tired, miserable and subject to more of the terrible side effects of chemo and cancer.
I stopped getting my chemo infusions for a month leading up to a scheduled induction to have my daughter, to ensure my blood levels were good and to reduce any complications that may come along during the birth. My daughter’s birth went so fast and smoothly; the doctor was still putting her gloves on when she started to make her way into the world! She has been so healthy and happy ever since her birth. I couldn’t imagine life without her.
Her name is pretty coincidental, as I planned on naming her Journee before my diagnosis. She has definitely lived up to that name. She is now almost 3 years old and going on 13 with her advanced and hilarious personality. I can’t wait to see where life takes her strong-willed mind.
The one statement I said every day I woke up that kept me going was: positive thinking = positive outcomes!
Disclaimer: The information in this post is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new health care regimen. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.
Today, at almost three years in remission, I still face many side effects due to the chemotherapy I received. Any pain medication I was prescribed did nothing to help me, they never did. Once I started taking CBD, my life changed. I never knew I could get such pain relief from a tincture made from hemp! I can’t even believe that I used to live day-to-day with chronic pain, just dealing with it. To this day I have taken CBD as a tincture every morning, I have switched all of my health and beauty products to ones that contain hemp or CBD, and I have never felt healthier!
If any of this sounds familiar to you; try it, you might like it!”
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