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Ashwini Purushotamam (Ovarian Cancer Survivor)

Ashwini Purushotamam (Ovarian Cancer Survivor)

It all started with stomach pain

I delivered my baby in 2016. Everything was going well. After a year, in 2017, I had severe stomach pain. I was rushed to the hospital. In the city scan, ovarian torsion was revealed. A tumor was surrounding the ovary causing torsion. I was operated on in an emergency, and the tumor was sent for the biopsy. 

Diagnosis and treatment

It was diagnosed as dysgerminoma (ovarian cancer), stage 2. I was just 25 then. As I was young, doctors had the assumption that the tumor could spread aggressively. My treatment started with chemotherapy. I was given a heavy dose. The treatment used to continue for three days continuously, and I used to stay in the hospital. Chemotherapy was given in a week gap. 

Side effects of treatment

The treatment gave me horrible side effects. The first and foremost was the hair loss. I had very long and beautiful hair. I used to possess it proudly. But during the treatment, I started losing my hair. It was very disappointing. I stopped meeting people. I did not want to face people.

Apart from this, I also suffered from nausea and bleeding from the gum. I was not able to take any food. I also had darkness in the nail etching allergy. All these side effects together made me feel low and depressed. 

Surrounded by depression

Because of cancer and its side effects, I went into depression. I was always worried about my cancer remission. Fear, anger, depression, cancer reoccurrence, and sleepless nights all took a toll on me. I was concerned about my one-year-old kid. I was full of negativity, channelling all these negativities on my family. 

Books helped me to get rid of depression

To get rid of depression, I started reading books. It helped a lot in bringing positivity to me. I read the book Law of attraction; this book helped immensely bring positivity, gratitude, a sense of obligation etc. During my hospital stay, I used to read books. Reading books improved my focus, memory, empathy, and reduced stress, improved my mental health.

Focus on career

After my treatment got over, I wanted to resume my career. I tried to keep myself away from the same atmosphere and surroundings, so I continued my job within five months. I focused on my career and went to Bangalore to learn new technology. Initially, no one in my family wanted me to work as they were worried about my health. They thought that I should not take on an extra burden, but for me, it was a mode to occupy me with some productive work and keep negativity away.

Conceiving the second time

The doctor told me that I cannot have my menstruation cycle and cannot conceive because of cancer. But after five months of my treatment, I conceived for the second time. My family and doctors recommended I abort this baby as physically I could not handle it. In the first and second-trimester city scan, the babys brain growth was not up to the mark, but in the third trimester, it was perfect. I took it as a miracle and became very positive about it. I started taking care of myself. I know it is essential for the baby. I believe that a healthy diet and a good lifestyle can help cure cancer. 

Cancer champion coach

What I learned through my cancer journey, I wanted to spread among other people also. I started counselling people about cancer and how positive thought helps you fight cancer. I want to create a cancer-free world where all humankind leads a healthy, fit and fulfilled life where cancer is just a zodiac sign. I will not leave this earth until I transform the lives of survivors and spread awareness as much as possible; I guide survivors in my unique style by combining healthy eating, mindfulness and holistic living, which will touch upon their lives and make them champions.

I use different social media platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter. She believes that Information about cancer cells travels faster than cancer cells in the digital era.

Cancer is not a taboo

When I decided to share my cancer journey with others, my family was not taken positively. They did not want me to disclose my cancer in public. Initially, except for my family, no one knew about my disease. But I wanted to move ahead. Cancer is not a taboo now; it is like any other disease, and it is treatable if taken care of properly. With proper food, a healthy lifestyle and sound sleep, we can beat cancer. Cancer is not a weakness; it is a blessing in disguise because we learn so many things. I learnt so many things after being diagnosed with it. I was not having a healthy lifestyle before cancer, which I leant later.

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