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Category Archives: Colon Cancer Battle and Survival Stories

Empathy: How We Can Be Better at Listening and Responding

Like many of you I am daily praying for many people. For those who are facing health issues, families with financial burdens and relationship battles and the list gets longer daily. It can be so overwhelming at times and as we empathize with others we often begin to carry their cares with us.

Sense and Sensibility
When I was diagnosed with cancer and even sometimes to this day I will come across people who find it difficult to empathize. I realize it’s usually not intentional but people speak without thinking. I have heard statements like:  

  • I don’t know how you can deal with everything you’ve been through I could never do it
  • I would never be able to deal with a spouse going through all that you went through
  • I don’t know how you do it

I realize that good health is taken for granted until you or a loved one is faced with an illness. Those of us who have dealt with illness are not looking for sympathy. Oh you poor thing good for you. I don’t know how you do it. That is the last ling we want to hear. No instead we want you to realize that illness is not a choice and anyone of us can be faced with it.

We have all made plans for our life. Like you we too are planning for career, a family, buying a home, vacations, grandchildren etc. None of us plan for illness in our lives or our family but I can tell you it’s not an end to our life. It’s a hiccup and YES it takes adjustment but it makes you a fighter and survivor. You appreciate life more than ever and you don’t take the dailies for granted. God has given me a story and with my story a responsibility to help others. I am grateful to have the Lord.

Memory Power Verse:  “A man’s heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.” (Proverbs 16:9)    

My church recently covered a series on prayer and I wanted to share some of what I learned with all of you. Sometimes we are so challenged in life and I know it is difficult to pray or be thankful and give praise in the midst of an illness or challenge. The Lord reminded me that prayer is about seeking Him and listening not always talking/asking. The Lord knows our hearts are filled with trials and burdens for ourselves, our families and friends but we forget He never ceases to hear our prayers and His grace and love for us are limitless. We don’t need to have all of the answers but I’m grateful the Lord does.

Remember sympathy and empathy are NOT the same. Having empathy is not asking you to feel or join someone in the pain their going through but rather to validate their feelings and to realize that they are fellow human beings just like you trying to navigate through life despite the speed bumps and limitations. 

Please do more listening before responding. Instead of sympathizing with someone its best you say nothing and pray. Like the lyrics to the Ronan Keating song so wisely put it “You say it best when you say nothing at all.”

Thank you all for taking the time to read my blog. It really weighs heavy on my heart that we are all trying daily to grow to become better listeners including myself. With the summer approaching I would really like the opportunity to feature some of my readers to share their stories. Since I believe everyone has a story to tell and we can all learn from each other, I would like to invite you to write a guest blog post sharing your story and/or tips with my blogging audience. I encourage you to read through my blog posts and if your message aligns with that of Chat With Dee Dee I would be honored to hear from you. It is my desire through my blog and outreach ministry to share my survival story to help others. AND a great part of my ministry and possibly the most rewarding is meeting others and hearing their story and learning tips and advice from others. I know we can collectively learn and benefit from each other.

I want to encourage you to write to me if you need someone to share your story with and pray with (e-mail Dee Dee Click Here).

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Sharing Our Story Helps Us Begin to Tackle Some of the Tough Questions Together

When I started blogging and sharing my story I had no idea the responses I would get or if I would get any. But I have been inspired, moved, honored and most of all I am grateful to learn from others. Others have entrusted me with their story and new friendships have started to grow.  

 
We all have seasons in life where we seem to be waiting for the answers to some of the tough questions we face and are asking ourselves, God and others …
  • WHY
  • WHAT IF
  • DOES ANYONE UNDERSTAND WHAT I’M GOING THROUGH?

I’ve wrestled with these questions myself and have brought them to the Lord but I don’t think we’ll ever have the right answers or be able to rationalize loss. I appreciate how Charles R. Swindoll profoundly responds to the WHY question by looking back at the book of Job and how he responded to adversity … “Through all Job went through and lost he did not sin nor did he blame God” (1:22). Swindoll rightly points out the more logical question of …Why didn’t Job respond with blaming God? What kept Job from bitterness or even thoughts of suicide?” The answer to these questions though it’s not simple by any means it is powerful and thought provoking. “He rested his adversity with God, not feeling forced to answer why. When we’re looking in all the right directions, we won’t take the wrong turn.” (Cited fromSeptember 25, 2010 blog post from Insight for Today).[i]

Have you ever really listened to others and though it’s likely something you’ve heard in the past BAM for some reason it hits you like a ton of bricks?

 I have to admit that sometimes when I’m sharing my story though it’s been a tough journey for me I wonder should I continue. Is my story so unique hasn’t it all been done or said before? I think about how so many people have been through a lot so why and how would God use my story.  

Sharing Our Story Helps Bond Us in Friendship

I attended a woman’s fellowship and speaking event recently and we were all very blessed to hear the powerful message “Unleashing the Beauty of Purpose” delivered by a wonderful speaker. The speaker began sharing that she wondered if what she had to share with others was worthwhile. After all she said so many other people had much more interesting stories to share than I. I know you’ve heard it before but I’ll say it again since its powerful and true … WE ALL HAVE A STORY TO SHARE AND WE ALL HAVE WISDOM TO IMPART.

The introduction to the speaker was very touching. The host did her research and gave a beautiful opening and overview to help us connect in a more personal way. She shared some flattering and heartwarming statements from the speaker’s husband that really helped us to bond.

The opening question from the host …. Share one thing about yourself that you like. Now for women this can be difficult since no one wants to appear self flattering or boastful but that wasn’t the point of the question at all. Our host reminded us that if we are to love others, we first must learn to love ourselves for the gifts God has given to us.  One by one we went around the room and the Holy Spirit allowed each woman to dig deep and find our ‘one thing’ we were thankful and blessed with. I’ll share a few with you.

  • A love for children
  • A heart for elderly
  • Empathy for others
  • A love of for people
  • A helping spirit

When we share our personal stories we are bonded in friendship not only by our likes and hobbies but true and deep friendships are rooted on sharing our experiences our joy, sorrows, the why’s and what if. Our personal story shapes us and makes us who we are and offers hope in coping with grief, give us inspiration and hope to continue.  

I want to encourage you to write to me if you need someone to share your story with and pray with (e-mail Dee Dee Click Here).  Since I believe everyone has a story to tell and we can all learn from each other, I would like to invite you to write a guest blog post sharing your story and/or tips with my blogging audience. I encourage you to read through my blog posts and if your message aligns with that of Chat With Dee Dee I would be honored to hear from you. It is my desire through my blog and outreach ministry to share my survival story to help others. AND a great part of my ministry and possibly the most rewarding is meeting others and hearing their story and learning tips and advice from others. I know we can collectively learn and benefit from eachother.

Memory Power Verse: “Letthe wordof Christ dwell inyourichly, teachingandexhortingone anotherwithallwisdom, singingpsalms, hymns, and spiritualsongs, all withgrace in yourheartsto God.” Col 3:16

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 

 
 

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Ileostomy Nutrition: What can I eat after my surgery?

Eat Manga

I’m Italian so I love food but living with an ileostomy is quite different it really limits the amount of food (selection and quantity) that I can intake. Remember I’m working with my small intestines only.

I wanted to offer the following tips for eating healthy as an ileostomy ostomate that work for me. I would love to hear from others about what works for you including recipes (let’s have fun with this).

  • eat small portions frequently, Very simple but many of us ignore this tip from our surgeon.  It is important to eat small meals frequently throughout the day as the ileostomy never stops working so you can easily become dehydrated and have an electrolyte imbalance. I know this from experience (I’ve had a few visits to the ER due to dehydration).
  • get plenty of liquids, The waste out-put with an ileostomy is more liquid then the paste out-put that a colostomy produces. I had to be very careful ensuring I have enough fluids and  in order to get the necessary nutrients I would lack from not being able to eat vegetables and fruit etc. Most people drink 8 glasses of water a day but I aim for 10+ glasses of fluids a day. I learned to take 1-3 Ensure Plus a day to keep my weight up and to get the nutrition I can’t digest in my food intake. I also drink plenty of Gatorade to replenish electrolytes lost from having an ileostomy. Electrolyte imbalance can include loss of appetite, drowsiness, abdominal cramps and faint feelings. Seek medical help immediately!
  • salt is very important, While most people should avoid salt I need to take an extra serving of salt to put back all that is lost from the fluid out-put of an ileostomy. For quite a while in addition to table salt I had to take salt tablets. Consult your physician about the proper amount your body requires.
  • raw veggies/fruits and alternatives, Some of the most nutritional foods that are good for most people (vegetables, fruit, fiber…) cannot be easily digested by many people with ileostomy though all cases are different. I can eat a few veggies carrots, a little broccoli,  acorn squash, green beans if overcooked it helps digestion and I still will put them in the blender (Magic Bullet Blender is my favorite) and puree. Fruits are very limited too but often I will dice up strawberries, blueberries, very small piece of banana and add non-fat plain yogurt and puree in the bullet blender. I love water melon and citrus fruit so I make sure to enjoy the juice without the fiber of the pulp. I use the juicer and enjoy my carrot and apple juicers. Where there’s a will there’s a way!
  • blockages, Taking pills are difficult too because even a pill can cause a blockage in the stoma so I have to crush all of the medications I take which I will review in a later post. I also use plenty of extra virgin olive oil (aka “Liquid Gold”) on my food to help with digestion. I learned this tip recently online from other ostomates at ‘ostomy secrets newsletter’ taking 100% Coconut Water when you feel a blockage coming on will open up the ostomy and prevent blockage. This is so amazing not only does Coconut Water have amazing health benefits (rehydrates, cools, fights virus, boost immune, balance ph..) but it so effective for avoiding blockages. And remember to chew, chew and chew again all of your food.

Short  List of Things I can’t digest

• roughage and bulk (lettuce and most greens)

• beans, nuts, corn

• onions, olives  

• carbonated drinks

• spicy and fried foods

• fiber & whole grains (including cereal which is full of fiber)

 Please discuss any diet or nutrition concerns with your doctor.

 

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WHY, I started My blog sharing My Cancer Survivor Story to Inspire & Help Others

We can live an abundant life despite our limitations
Colon Cancer Survivor’s Journey

I’m a Colorectal Cancer Survivor and blogger.

I was diagnosed with Colorectal Cancer almost 24 years ago and at that time I couldn’t find help. Now I’m using my survivor story to advocate for Early Testing and to help others.

 

WHY, I started my blog sharing my healthy story for two reasons:

First, To come alongside other cancer survivors and family members as an outreach to be there for those going through cancer treatment and after care. Please visit and share (https://chatwithdeedee.wordpress.com/about/)  my blog with others who may have colorectal cancer or similar.

Second, To bring awareness and advocate for testing and early diagnosis of colorectal cancer. By sharing my health story and life lessons I hope others will be compelled to take action. 

MISSION, A key part of my mission as an advocate is to share resources I discover especially for colorectal cancer survivors and other digestive diseases (IBD, Crohn’s Disease), those with neuropathy, lymphedema and other cancer survivors and families.

 Featured Resource March 2011, I’m currently highlighting a group offering a HAND UP to ostomates that have no insurance or are under insured. I discovered the Osto Group, a non-profit organization helping people who experience financial strains to continue to order their medical supplies. One person shared, “When we lost insurance coverage, we felt we were lost. Also, there isn’t an extra $200/mo. in our budget. I haven’t been able to find any meaningful employment for more than 12 months.” These unfortunate ones actually use common household supplies and tape in place of ostomy supplies!  That sounds bad, doesn’t it? Well this is reality for some. (summarized from a testimonial letter written to Osto Group). 

The women running this group are so dedicated to helping others in need. They have been serving patients Nationwide in the ostomate community since May, 2008; providing ostomy supplies to for those who do not have medical insurance or their insurance doesn’t cover their supplies. A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to get better acquainted by speaking with three wonderful women that run this non-profit group. They’ve shared with us that while they’ve never advertised or self-promoted, never have they been at a loss for donations or patient’s in need. I was so touched by their efforts that I am compelled to share, and hopefully spread more awareness about all that their doing to help others. 

Donations from the kindness and generosity of people like you!

Featured Resource March 2011, The women running this group are so dedicated to helping others in need. They have been serving patients Nationwide in the ostomate community since May, 2008; providing ostomy supplies to for those who do not have medical insurance or their insurance doesn’t cover their supplies. A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to get better acquainted by speaking with three wonderful women that run this non-profit group. They’ve shared with us that while they’ve never advertised or self-promoted, never have they been at a loss for donations or patient’s in need. I was so touched by their efforts that I am compelled to share, and hopefully spread more awareness about all that their doing to help others. 


Financial Donations
:
YES! I would like to make a tax-deductible donation to help Osto Group bring ostomy medical  supplies to uninsured Nationwide. 

__ $5  __ $10 __ $25  __ $50 __ $100  __ Other amount: $______

You may make checks payable to Osto Group, 4521 PGA Blvd #228, Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33418-3997 P: 877-678-6690. Since the Osto Group is a 501(c)(3) organization they will provide a receipt for each donation for tax purposes. 

 _ I prefer to donate Ostomy Medical supplies. Please call me at this number CALL 877-678-6690  or MAIL OSTOMY SUPPLY DONATIONS TO: Osto Group, 15070 Corporate Rd. N., Jupiter, FL 33478.  

Prayer, we ask that you lift this group up in your prayers so they can continue to bless others.

 

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What if you lose your insurance and can’t afford ostomy supplies: CALL TO ACTION

What if you lose your insurance and can’t afford ostomy supplies: CALL TO ACTION
 

I’m writing to you today to advocate for prevention of colon cancer and to bring awareness about an organization that is giving back to others in a big way.

Why would you want to respond to this call to action?

Because Ostomy Supplies are a necessity for living not a luxury.

Osto Group Mission: To meet the needs of those who have fallen on hard times by providing them with quality supplies and the necessities for living. In the course of accomplishing this task, we will never diminish the value of a person or the potential that they hold. No one will ever be turned away!
877-678-6690


 

 A HAND UP NOT A HAND OUT FOR OSTOMY PATIENTS’ NATIONWIDE


Often treatment of colorectal cancer will warrant a temporary or permanent colostomy/ileostomy (an ostomy is a surgical opening to the intestines) which requires a wide range of medical supplies. Ostomy supplies are not a choice; you can’t live without them and the monthly expenses are in the hundreds. With the difficult state of the economy and many people facing job loss and lack of insurance it makes me wonder how ostomy patients are purchasing their supplies. Thanks to this wonderful group of women running the ‘Osto Group’ a non-profit organization that offers ostomy supplies to patients nationwide for those who do not have medical insurance or their insurance doesn’t cover their supplies. One person shared, “When we lost insurance coverage, we felt we were lost. Also, there isn’t an extra $200/mo. in our budget. I haven’t been able to find any meaningful employment for more than 12 months. These unfortunate ones actually use common household supplies and tape in place of ostomy supplies! That sounds bad, doesn’t it? Well this is reality for some”. (Summarized from a testimonial letter written to Osto Group).
HOW CAN YOU HELP THE OSTO GROUP?
1.PRAYER: First we ask for your prayers for the Osto Group so that they can continue to provide this

 

Donations from the kindness and generosity of people like you!

Ostomy Donations from the kindness and generosity of people like you!

needed support to ostomates  in the United States who do not have insurance or have insufficient insurance which does not cover their ostomy supplies

 

2. OSTOMY DONATIONS: Osto Group, 15070 Corporate Rd. N, Jupiter, FL 33478
The following items are what Osto Group is looking for in the way of donated material:
  • Hollister Products – Wafers and Pouches – Skin barriers, cleansers and wipes, M – 9.
  • Convatec Products – Wafers and Pouches – Please label with Manufacturers part number if they are out of their box if you can. Skin barriers, Eakin Seals and Stoma Paste.
  • Coloplast Products – Wafers and Pouches – Urostomy Pouches.
  • Nu Hope or any brand of ostomy product, tail closures, sponges, wipes, scissors, bandages, as long as these are packaged intact and in good condition.

 


3. FINANCIAL DONATIONS: $5, $10 and up no donation is too small!
Osto Group, corporate office 4521 PGA Blvd #228, Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33418-3997. Questions Call The Osto Group: 877-678-6690. Since the Osto Group is a 501(c)(3) organization they will provide a receipt for each donation for tax purposes.
 
4. SPREAD THE WORD ABOUT THE BENEFITS OF THE OSTO GROUP (http://www.ostogroup.org/ 877-678-6690). 
 
Thank you for all of your support.

 

 

 

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I Share My Health Story Because Early Detection Can Save a Life, National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month

Over 23 years ago I was diagnosed with Colon/Rectum Cancer.  What started as a simple polyp, turned out to be cancer, and was later removed , leaving me with an irreversible colostomy which eventually lead to an ileostomy. My doctor told me if I would have only come to him when the symptoms first occurred he could have removed the polyp and we would have avoided all the rest. That’s why I decided to start this blog, to advocate for early testing and prevention. Another passion of mine is a helping people and organizations in the ostomate community.


Call to Action for Ostomates Nationwide
When I discovered the Osto Group, a non-profit organization, I was amazed that there is  a group like this helping people who experience financial strains to continue to order their medical supplies. Through my blogging and outreach ministry, I have come across a number of people sharing what they are doing daily without ostomy supplies, since they can no longer afford to buy them having lost a job or medical insurance. One person shared, “When we lost insurance coverage, we felt we were lost. Also, there isn’t an extra $200/mo. in our budget. I haven’t been able to find any meaningful employment for more than 12 months.” These unfortunate ones actually use common household supplies and tape in place of ostomy supplies!  That sounds bad, doesn’t it? Well this is reality for some. (summarized from a testimonial letter written to Osto Group).

The women running this group are so dedicated to helping others in need. They have been serving patients Nationwide in the ostomate community since May, 2008; providing ostomy supplies to for those who do not have medical insurance or their insurance doesn’t cover their supplies. A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to get better acquainted by speaking with three wonderful women that run this non-profit group. They’ve shared with us that while they’ve never advertised or self-promoted, never have they been at a loss for donations or patient’s in need. I was so touched by their efforts that I am compelled to share, and hopefully spread more awareness about all that their doing to help others. 

While financial contributions are always welcomed, the Osto Group also accepts ostomy supplies from patients for which they no longer have a need.   877-678-6690  



Ostomy Donations: Osto Group, 15070 Corporate Rd. N., Jupiter, FL 33478
Financial Donations to their corporate office: Osto Group, 4521 PGA Blvd #228, Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33418-3997 P: 877-678-6690. Since the Osto Group is a 501(c)(3) organization they will provide a receipt for each donation for tax purposes.  

Osto Group Testimonials

·        Sent: Wednesday, February 02, 2011 11:41 PM Subject: [General Information] Thank you! Hello,I am a new customer who has insurance, but my insurance does not cover ostomy supplies. I just wanted to say thank you so much for what you are doing. I am 26 years old with an ostomy, and my husband and I have a 10 month old son. Due to health problems I had not worked in 3 years and just recently went back to work part time. Obviously we have a very tight budget, and when I found out about you guys I praised the Lord, because He has used you to meet my needs! Ostomy supplies are SO expensive, especially when you pay out of pocket. If I ever get this ostomy reversed I will donate any left over supplies to you guys. Once again, thank you from the bottom of my heart.Sincerely, Kimberly Long

  • Sent: Friday, January 28, 2011 12:53 PMSubject: Thank You Thank you for your prompt delivery of the Adapt Barrier Rings I ordered recently.  This was my first order since having Ostomy surgery.  I am very thankful for the assistance you provide to myself and others who have fallen on hard times.  It is difficult to find words to show my gratitude for your help in obtaining affordable supplies that I must have to function since my surgery.  Regards, Greg Click 
  • Sent: Friday, July 16, 2010 10:26 AMSubject: [General Information] thank you I wanted to write a note saying THANK YOU for helping me with my medical supplies. I can’t begin to tell you how it feels to finally get some sort of help. I am going to be able to change my ostomy wafers etc. and take care of my stoma when I need to thanks to you kind people. My words are not able to convy the grattitude I have for your fine group but I had to at least attempt to let you know how valuable and desperately needed your assistance can be to someone doing daily battle with Crohn’s Disease.yours truly,kenny Lucano
  • Sent: Monday, January 31, 2011 4:18 PMSubject: Testimonial I just wanted to say thank you for Osto Group! I was recently laid off from my job and I am still not working. Buying ostomy supplies are  a very expensive but necessary expense. I am extremly thankful that I can order my supplies thru Osto Group at a much lower price but and continue to use the same products just at a lower cost. I placed an order on Thursday and I received it on Monday! Again, I am very thankful for Osto Group and hope you will always be around to help us ostomy users! 
  • Sent: Thursday, February 17, 2011 12:09 PMSubject: Testimonials I had ileostomy surgery about five years ago.  I had insurance to cover the cost but was unable to continue the coverage shortly afterward.  Trying to pay full price for all the supplies was very expensive and stressful. I was given information about Osto Group by the supply company and found the items that I require at a drastically reduced price.  My husband recently lost his job and insurance coverage is not an option any time soon. If I need to buy my supplies at full cost, there will be other needed expenses that will have to be sacrificed. Through Osto Group and their donations my supply expense is more manageable and less stressful.  Thank you for all you do to continue to provide this service.Heidi Tobash 
  • Sent: Tuesday, February 01, 2011 7:44 PMSubject: [General Information] Thank YouI would like to say thank you to the people at Osto Group and all those whodonate the supplies.Without your help I don’t know what I would do after all colostomy supplies are not something that you can do without or reuse. I don’t have any insurance, I receive a very small SS check and right now I can not work and my husband has been laid off. We are both over 60 and live in rural area of Louisiana so Jobs are few and far between. Therefor without your help I would be in a real pickle. Again let me say Thank YouNancy
  • Sent: Monday, June 29, 2009 9:09 PMSubject: [General Information] note of thanksi just want to say thank you so much. you all are a blessing and a god send; without you and your help i would have had to use the same bags over and over and sometimes i would have to stay in the house with a towel over my stoma cause i didnt have any supplies and when i asked for help from my state they always turned me down i even lost my job cause i did not have any supplies but thanks to your program i have no more worries about where im going to get my next shipment of supplies and when i get back on my feet and find a job i am going to help you so you can keep up the good work of helping other people thank you from the bottom of my heart and god bless all of you. 
  • Sent: Wednesday, October 27, 2010 1:33 PMrhwoody sent a message using the contact form atI truly appreciate everything you are doing to help people with needs. I am so grateful I found your website and you have the supplies I need. It is taking a great deal of stress off my shoulders.Thank you very very much.Richard
  • Sent: Monday, January 31, 2011 6:08 PMTo Whom It May Concern: I am a 50 year old woman who had worked full time from the age of 17 until I turned 48. I was diagnosed with Crohns Disease while in my early 20’s. For the first 3-4 years my Crohn’s was in remission after a brief treatment regimen. Then I was in an auto accident and ever since that time my Crohn’s has been very active and for the most part non responsive to treatments that were available. Despite all of the surgeries that I have been through I continued to work and always had health insurance. Then I lost my job due to a declining economy and was all of a sudden an uninsured American. I began developing hernias and have had to undergo 18 hernia surgeries in the last 3.5 years. With no insurance I am responsible for all of those medical bills and I expect I will be paying until the day I pass. Through friends and family  I became aware of the Osto Group. I can tell you that I have been blessed by finding this group and being able to order my Ostomy supplies from them. The entire staff is always professional and they don’t judge me or assume that I am just someone who doesn’t want to work. I would otherwise have to choose between medical supplies and food. Ordering from them keeps me from having to make this decision. Unfortunately, in this country you have to be out of work for 2.5 years before you can get medicare if you are under a certain age (and provided you have been approved for Disb in the first place ) and on the flip side most insurance companies have pre-existing clauses and premiums that people in my situation usually cannot afford and so we go without insurance. The ladies at Osto Group provide a service that is vital to those of us cannot get help anywhere else. Every month when I order my supplies I hang up the phone thanking God for allowing me to find  the Osto Group. I truly do not know what I would do without them and I know that eventually I will get my medicare and will have to stop using their services but I can promise you this: there will be plenty of people behind me who be as blessed to have their services available as I have been. I would like to add a personal thank you to Barbara and her entire staff for being so wonderful to me. You ladies are like guardian angels and we could use a lot more of you in this world. Respectfully, Bette SmithEllendale, DE
  •  Sent: Friday, February 18, 2011 6:29 PM Subject: A blessingIn 2003 I had surgery for colon cancer and it left me with a colostomy. Two attempted re-sections failed and I was thankful to have health insurance at that time to pay for the needed supplies.  In 2008 my job played out and I was left without steady income and no health insurance. I contacted the major suppliers and manufacturers of ostomy products and they all told me they gave reduced rates for those with no health insurance but I was with almost no income at all and could not even afford that. At that time I was buying a wafer at a time from a medical supply store that was willing to work with me and washing out pouches and re-using them over and over again. Finally, I contacted Hollister yet again and they told me about Ostogroup. Since ordering from Ostogroup I have had greater peace of mind because they offer items at prices I can afford. I am very thankful for this venue for helping those who have need of ostomy supplies.I believe in what Ostogroup is doing. I have contributed unneeded supplies to their organization. I wanted to bless others the way Ostogroup has blessed me.Thank you. C. Wendell Ross
 

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Part 6: Refusing to Quit – Colon Cancer Survivors are Fighters!

the God of the valley is the God of the Mountain

Some of the most important things I can share with you about my survival story is my fight to beat colon cancer and how it begins with our minds and hearts. The battles that we often come across in life are not easy, but life is such a gift. My mom was a dear woman and she taught me we had to fight and be strong. She use to say to me yes you have cancer but you must now pull yourself up by your bra straps and be strong and get well to take care of your children. My mom did worry for me but she wanted me to fight so that is the lesson she gave me that really stuck.

I know my drive and perseverance to fight was what helped me thank the Lord. You must make an active choice to fight for your life as I did. I often cry out to the Lord and especially when we are going through a very tough time it’s difficult to pray or think of scriptures but I would remember and want to share with you that the Lord refuses to quit on us. When we are too weak to pray the Holy Spirit intercedes with God’s will on our behalf (Rom. 8:26-27). That comforts me immensely and I hope that it will comfort you too.

I try to look at things with a grateful heart and know that life is so precious and I am truly grateful for the mercy of God. It’s easier to praise God when things are up and positive but the God of the valley is the same God of the mountaintop. Life may bring us through the valleys but He always brings us back to the mountaintop if we let Him.

After all I’ve been through I realize I had to go through the valley to stand upon the mountain with God.

If you are feeling or experiencing something similar, I’d love to hear from you. I didn’t have anyone who could relate to me at the time and I don’t want that for you.  Please send me an email or reach out to me via Facebook or Twitter.

Love and God’s Blessings,

Dee Dee

 

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