Crystal's Story

At 27 my life changed. I was tired and couldn't explain it, like deep in my bones tired.  In my heart I knew something was wrong.  Not from the drama, make-a-splash place, but from a peaceful space that was clear and the message was "it's important! Investigate this persistently." I began a journey that led to hearing phrases like "inconclusive" "wait 3 months and get a recheck".  God, the Universe, my angels, still not sure which, said "don't wait".  On a phone call with my mother she said "you're instincts are never wrong, be persistent."  I drove past a billboard that said, "get a second opinion! City of Hope, we are here for you".  I paid a fee, got that second opinion and found out that I had stage III, B invasive epithelial ovarian cancer.  Most women die before they know they have it.  It's stealthy and quiet and intense.  I was diagnosed and began a journey of chemotherapy, radiation, and the greatest feeling of vulnerability and sickness I have ever known.  I went through a year of intense treatment that made some head way toward survival, but not much. I decided at 28 years old to stop the treatments, I felt like it was killing me faster than the cancer was.  I went to the far east to die quietly, peacefully, and without burdening anyone and met some eastern medical practitioners in Busan, Korea who said, "you are still FILLED with life,  fight. Here are some tools and some referrals to practitioners in the US. Go home be with your family and live."  Well I did.  I began a journey of getting in tune with myself, absorbing as much information as possible, and trial and error.  6 months later I found myself in my first remission.  Knowing clearly that the studied survival rate was 5 years... I defied the odds and it's 17 years later and I'm still fighting. In the meantime I became a mother, a better sister, a partner and friend to many and the struggle continues. Everyday. I'm still adding to my tool box, but the staples have been my faith, a positive mindset, determination, lots of laughter and love, a great communicative relationship with my health practitioners, essential oils, working out, caring deeply about my food sources, staying on top of current research, and trusting my own instincts even when they say to go against traditional medical advice. I'm here to empower, encourage, challenge, and inspire others to take the reigns of their health and understand that they are the center of their experience and that we all have the power to change our outcomes.  Empowered health is the goal. By any means necessary.