My name is Yodfat Glazer, and I am going to be 19 next month. I’m originally Israeli, but have lived in Guatemala for the last 9 years.
When I was turning 14, I was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, stage IIIB. It started out with intense headaches, an awful cough, and a fever that wouldn’t disappear for weeks. It was October ’92 and finals were due. My pediatrician told my parents that it would be best to wait until finals were over and then to admit me to the hospital for thorough tests. In one week I had two biopsies done.
The first one didn’t reveal much, and the second provoked a suspicion of cancer. The day after my checking out from the hospital was my 14th birthday. I got a puppy.My parents did not want to tell me about me maybe having cancer; not until they got a second opinion.
I was simply told that the doctors were uncertain about what I had. We traveled to Houston (Texas Children’s Hospital). My biopsy was sent there. While a doctor was checking me, he was talking to my parents. I wasn’t really listening until he said something that caught my attention. Something like, “..
so we’ll see if it’s that or it isn’t that..” After he left the room I asked my mother Mom, what did he mean by “that”? She said he meant cancer.By that time I hadn’t the least idea about what cancer was.
I knew some people lost their hair, but figured that probably some types of cancer made your hair fall, while others don’t. But it got me a bit worried. I still wasn’t thinking of the chemotherapy. After cancer was confirmed, we had a meeting with the doctor. He asked me if there were any questions, and I said, “Yes, would my hair fall?” He told me it probably will. I started to cry.I began chemotherapy in November.
I had six months of it, and after that we went to Israel for a second opinion of how to proceed with the treatment. I was told to have 2 more months of chemotherapy, and three months after, to go back and have another gallium scan. The gallium scan in december reavled a bit of tumor still in the chest. So I went through another month of radiotherapy in Israel.
That sure beat it.It’s been 5 years since the begining of treatment and I’m doing great. I’m very much afraid of the cancer coming back. I’m pretty much afraid of any serious illneses, of hospitals and medicine. Throughout my treatment I think I was much more optimistic than I am now. Kind of like the cancer sucked out all of my strength; but surely I had just enough to beat it.
It was almost as hard to end the treatment, as it was to begin it, since all my concentration, all of my goals, were focused on it. But the future looks bright, and I regained hope.