Well hello there! You are here because you know me, have heard of me, are praying for me, love me, or it could simply be coincidental. Regardless if you found me on a random search, I can guarantee that it wasn’t by chance. My name is Stephanie. I turned 25 on January 6th, 2012. 19 days later, on the 25th, I received news that forever changed my life. I was diagnosed with Large Cell Neuroendrocrine Cancer of the Cervix and given a less than 20% chance to survive the first year. After four separate battles against this disease within four years, 55 chemotherapy treatments, 28 radiation sessions, and four major surgeries my perspective on life has been radically altered. Believe it or not, heaping amounts of good can come from a terminal diagnosis. Through it all, God is still good.
Here I’ll be documenting the mountains and valleys of this expedition. More specifically, I’ll be candidly writing about my experience: highs, lows, fears, accomplishments, raw emotions, faith, hope, and ultimately, triumph. I’ll make you laugh and cry, because most likely I’ve been doing the same while writing. Here I’ll share hot topic issues like body image, depression, infertility, making difficult decisions, adjusting to a malignant life, and what happens in life after cancer. You’ll discover that I am passionate about living intentionally, have a super hot husband, enjoy reading, adore kids, and have an undying affection for my Lord and Savior.
This is also a place where you’ll be able to find my latest results and updates from doctors appointments, scans, tests, surgery, treatments, and other procedures. I will try my best to update soon and frequently. You will notice entries from my husband. He’ll take the reins at times when I’m in surgery or recovery. I may also ask him to write if I don’t have the energy to. Stay with me on this adventure and you’ll learn more about who I am, what I stand for, this disease I have, and my future.
God has given me this story to share. He wrote this book, I’m just translating for you. One thing I know for sure, cancer didn’t hide from me, so I sure as hell am not hiding from it.
Denise Gary Shaw PaswatersJanuary 29, 2012 at 10:42 PM (11 years ago)
I am so excited about this blog, Steph! It’s going to be awesome — a great way for everyone to stay informed and an excellent way for you to process things. Love, love, love and more love to you, my dear daughterReply
Aimee O'ConnorFebruary 1, 2012 at 11:28 PM (11 years ago)
Stephanie! I know we have lost contact after working together, but Have really loved how I have Facebook to keep me in the loop. I’ve been able to see when you got engaged, married (you looked so beautiful!) and how much you love the Lord (amazing!)
This blog you’ve created is beautiful and such a wonderful way for you to tell your story. I can’t imagine what it must have felt like to receive that news on the 25th, and I’m so sorry that cancer chose you. However, you have the most positive outlook and attitude that is so inspiring! I don’t know anyone who could read your blog without wanting to do and be better because of your example.
I will pray for you on your journey! It seems as though you have an absolute wonderful family surrounding you. Thank you for shining the like of Christ in everyone’s eyes. Your bible verses are perfect.
I think I might have rambled here. Bottom line is though I’m here if you ever need anything! God bless you and your family. You will survive this! (you already knew that though)!Reply
thoreaulynotedFebruary 2, 2012 at 8:47 AM (11 years ago)
Steph, this is great! I’m excited you’re bringing us all along in your journey. Miss you and praying for you lotsReply
SherryFebruary 2, 2012 at 7:01 PM (11 years ago)
Steph, JUST TODAY, I was on your street, and wondered how you were doing. I prayed for you and Matt… and come home to read Celeste’s blog. Darlin, I will fight in prayer for you… Love to both!Reply
Amy AndersonFebruary 2, 2012 at 10:16 PM (11 years ago)
Your strength and optimism is simply amazing – sending you lots of love from Oklahoma, dear.Reply
Bob RobertsonFebruary 8, 2012 at 2:26 AM (11 years ago)
Hi Stephanie. Great to meet you through Ginger Wedin, our very capable health person at WorldVenture. Loved reading your blog–your earthly and realistic attitude, writing style, good dose of sarcasm and humor make it very interesting and provocative. For sure this will be used to bless many, many people who read it. I have several friends and relatives I will be forwarding it on to. You are a real hero, and you can count on our prayers for you (I and my wife Suzanne).
We are ahead of you by about 9 hours (Middle East), and so that puts your surgery at about 9:30 this evening. Glad to be part of your “prayer team.”
Claudia ZimmermanFebruary 8, 2012 at 2:29 PM (11 years ago)
My name is Claudia and my husband, Zach, and I are good friends of Mark and Bridget. Your blog is truly inspirational. Your courage and devotion to Christ are beautiful, as are you. Praying without ceasing…Reply
Onno KoelmanFebruary 8, 2012 at 4:52 PM (11 years ago)
My wife works at a famous cancer clinic in San Francisco Bay Area, California – it’s called the Pine St clinic. They do amazing work from an alternative perspective. Have you had anyone look at your health from an Eastern perspective? I’m friends with Paige Paswaters is how I found this link. Be strong!
Chris McdadeFebruary 9, 2012 at 2:08 AM (11 years ago)
Hi Stephanie, I’m a friend of your sister Paigey. My oldest sis Wendy went through the same. I wanted to cry, scream and cuss all at the same time when I found out.( which I did ) Then I realized all my sister needed was her brother by her side. It was a rough journey. It seems you’re a strong willed woman and with support of your friends and family you will be fine I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers. Chris M.Reply
JULIE HANNA (Jasmine Bowlin's mum in Australia)February 15, 2012 at 6:55 PM (11 years ago)
I do not know you personally but anyone that has touched my daughters life (Jasmine Bowlin) is a kindred spirit with me. I praise God for His love through friendships. Friendships that share both the good and the hard times. Thank you for your openess to yield with confidence in His power to not only save but to heal. His love will embrace you even when it may not feel like it and I pray for mammoth amounts of support and encouragement for you and your super hot husband. I hope to meet you and hug you in person some day but for now I will pray and praise God with you, and for you. Be blessed special lady x Jules
NannyFebruary 20, 2012 at 9:23 AM (11 years ago)
Papa here trying to set up email link for NannyReply
Faith ChanMarch 2, 2012 at 12:23 PM (11 years ago)
Hello, Stephanie, my name is Faith Chan and I am an old friend of your grandparents Rev. and Mrs. Robert Paswaters. I just want you to know that my family and I are praying for you. Your strong faith in God during this terrible storm have encouraged us greatly to trust in Him always. We love you!Reply
Rebecca GrantMarch 13, 2012 at 7:18 AM (11 years ago)
Stephanie, I continue to pray for your healing and for strength. You are such a strong lady in so many ways, but mostly, your faith is such a wonderful example to us all. May God see you through each new day and know He holds you in His arms. Love in Christ-Ron and Becky Grant (Friends of your grandparent’s and bothers and sisters in Christ).Reply
Dr. Kristine WolbergMarch 23, 2012 at 1:45 PM (11 years ago)
I’m a colleague of your father’s at Valor Christian High School. I have a twenty-six year old daughter, which helps me to imagine how your parents might be feeling. I will be following your blog (put it on my Favorites bar) and will be praying for you daily. May God bless you with wonderful care, strength, and many praying friends. I will be praying for your husband and parents as well.
Mendie LangenhorstApril 13, 2012 at 11:11 AM (11 years ago)
What a pleasure and honor to meet and read your story . A wonderful young lady shared your link with me knowing I am fighting for my life also batteling maestas melanoma cancer. Please forgive me my brain haas slipped and can’t remember her sweet name but she works at American Family Insurance. Please know that I have and will continue to pray for you and your healing through our Lord Jesus. You sound like a young lady that really has a love for life and has an adventitious life ahead of you. I want to share a word group healing ministry that I have been blessed to find Terri@Livingfreeministries.comReply
I am starting a new treatment today after having some severe side affects from another but am praying Gods Word and confident in his peace.
Please know you have a new prayer warrior in me. God Bless You on your road in recovery. Mendie!
Pat KuperJune 5, 2012 at 7:31 AM (11 years ago)
I love reading of your faith and courage!
When I was 23 I was diagnosed with non-invasive cervical cancer (carcinoma in situ) and had to go through several different types of treatments before finally having to have a hysterectomy at 24. I had just gone through a divorce 3 months prior to being diagnosed and was living on my own. At the time I wasn’t a Christian and felt my world had come to an end, children had always been a dream of mine.
I am now a 52 year old happily married mother of 2. I have a very close relationship with God and rely on Him to get through each and every day. I am blessed beyond my wildest dreams; my children are 14 & 12 and I know beyond a doubt they are the children God intended me to have all along.
I know now He was with me every step of the way during my illness; however I wish I would have known Him during that time, the overwhelming lost and hopelessness could have been avoided.
I am sharing my story to let people who reads your blog know that Christ is with you whether you believe or not. Open yourself up to God and allow him to help you through all of your struggles. It makes such a difference in the hard times and the good time.
Stephanie, this is just a bump in the road of your on-going life. God will bless you with the children He has intended for you & Matt. I pray for you, love you and am with you, in Christ, every step of the way on your journey. I look forward to reading of your remission and cure, of your path to children and your continued walk with Christ.
God Bless you,
PRISCILLA BAPPJune 28, 2014 at 8:09 PM (9 years ago)
Dear Stephanie, You do not know me but I know of you when your family was at Mission Hills Church. I heard you share your testimony one Sunday morning! I am sharing your story with my daughter, Stephanie, who is 34 years old. She was on life support last October for 8 days and in the hospital for over 40 days. She was in her 24th week of pregnancy and lost her baby in the process. She is still trying to recover from all that has happened to her. Your story is one of faith and hope! Thank you for sharing your story with others. You bring hope and encouragement to all who read it. Thank you, Stephanie, as your continue your journey! I will continue to pray for you! Love, Priscilla BappReply