The month of October is Breast Cancer Awareness month and 263Chat caught with Rejoice Utsiwegota Zvobgo who is a breast cancer survivor. Zvobgo opened up on living with the side effects of breast cancer.
She is still receiving treatment to suppress the cancer cells and in this interview with our reporter Faith Panashe Zvorufura, she takes us through her journey to this day.
- Tell Us About Yourself. Who is Rejoice Utsiwegota Zvobgo?
Rejoice Utsiwegota Zvobgo, is a miracle a blessed and highly favored lady. Besides winning the battle against cancer I was born at 6 months, spent days in mum’s womb without amniotic fluid Doctors said a baby can’t survive without amniotic fluid but God said No and here I am today.
- What does Rejoice do?
I am a chef venturing into events planning. Though my biggest dream and prayer is to own my own NGO. This NGO will Offer
1.Prayer groups for the journey ? He is the Greatest Physician John 5:1-9.
2.Support Cancer patients that cannot afford treatment.
3.Support kids that lost a parent to cancer.
- a) For the patient giving them hope.
- b) For the family with patient with cancer.
- c) For the spouse with a partner with cancer patients go through the most painful divorce.
- d) Getting the patient ready for the side effects, for the emotional roller coaster , and to make sure the patient understands that there is nothing wrong with them when friends and family become distant or enemies.
4) Supply Wigs Hats and Caps for patients suffering hair loss.
5) Hoping to find companies that will be willing to donate supplements to help with this journey
- When were you diagnosed with breast cancer?
Was Diagnosed 27 September 2015..
- How did you feel when you first received the news?
I think Dr Nduku said I had the weirdest and scaring reaction. I smiled and said okay what is the next move is. I was at peace and happy that at least I found out early though my family freaked out on my behalf. God bless their lovely hearts.
- Tell me about your treatment process.
I had 8 rounds of chemotherapy I cringe just thinking about it. It was the worst
The side effects I went through were:
Nausea and vomiting
Low blood count
21 Radiotherapy visits this was okay just had a lot of fatigue, finished all rounds a happy soul till the radiation therapy blisters gave me a hard time ,those where painful.
Now I am on Zoladex and Tamoxifen the side effects are hell but its part of the journey. These drugs are suppressing my hormones from generating cancer cells. Because the type of cancer I had is hormone generated.
Following one of your posts on Twitter, you mentioned “This is it I’m tired fuck cancer even if it’s gone it’s still affecting me in so many ways!!”
Hahaha that tweeter post had so much anger in it I was going through a lot of pain caused by the hormone blockers that prevent cancer from coming back and on the other hand I have a bad tooth its causing so much pain but can only get it sorted when I detox the Zoladex injection and Tamoxifen tablets in other words it’s risky to get major dental work done.
- Can you please enlighten us on how it’s still affecting you?
It has become my DNA because I still go through pain I still suffer side effects I still put the ex-cancer part in all I do cannot take risks.
It is a part of me because my eye sight keeps getting worse , I have bad memory loss in cancer talk we call it FOG BRAIN , I am impatient, I sometimes run out of air by just lifting up a child , so can’t do any heavy work or exercise. I have really mad migraines I can go through 36 hours without sleeping,
I have to think twice before wearing a certain outfit remember I have one breast people that know me will tell you that I am always in a t-shirt and bottoms just because it really covers up it hides the deformed side of me.
I always tell my husband how I feel one day he will leave because I am deformed sometimes I feel he is going to get tired of me being sick , he is constantly giving me assurance that he loves me the way I am and that we will go through each stage together. He is indeed my angel sent from above.
- What has changed in your life?
I also go through days where by I don’t eat; sometimes I get cravings like a pregnant woman sometimes food and Juice smell off so I eat ice.
My daughter is still frightened to loose me she was right by my side through my journey sometimes she cries and says mum if you die I will die with you. It’s my prayer everyday God keep me alive till she is older. I always tell her that Kiesha I will not die before your wedding I have to constantly remind her that I’m ok. She knows all the meds I need for every side effect too. So if your relative is fighting cancer please check on the kids and give the home comfort them and hug them.
- Please take us through the check-up process, what really happens?
I have to get blood tests every 3 months; I have to get a CT scan done after every 6 months,
I get a pet scan done from my head to my toes.
- You are a very hardworking, cheerful woman. How do you manage to keep up?
I love cooking and whenever I’m stressed I cook. I grew up that child that was always too playful till now I never take anything seriously remember God put us on our life’s path for a reason ..
- What message would you like to provide women in the community?
And cancer is not contagious. My husband has been asked this question so many times.
Getting screening tests regularly you may find breast, cervical, and colorectal (colon) cancers early, when treatment is likely to work best. Lung cancer screening is recommended for some people who are at high risk,, early detection gives you high chances of damaging all cancer cells.
Thank you 263 chat you have been supportive and whenever I’m down you check on me and that’s priceless.
Thank Utsiwegota Nyagoro and Zvobgo family you are all amazing thank. You for all the prayers and reminding me that before every battle put God 1st.
I forgot to say Facebook PH ladies God bless you I have had ladies from this group buy me meds from stop pain , another bought me 3 months simply of Tamoxifen.. I didn’t even ask for these gifts but every time people say I bought you these meds because we are in this fight together, other ladies buy these meds as a thank you for giving us hope. You are amazing.
October is breast cancer awareness month please take time to get checked. Thank you for giving me a chance to express myself once again it feels good speaking my heart out.