Do you believe in the 6th sense? I do now. It all started when I had a 6th sense that I had breast cancer. My mom, who is the most precious thing in this life to me, had breast cancer 12 years ago. All the doctors imposed on her to get chemotherapy knowing that her cancer was a bit more aggressive than others but she refused. She went on a holistic approach but never changed anything in her diet; she lived a normal life for 9 years up until it came back and she passed away 2 years ago (May God have mercy on her).
My name is Loubna Zarwi, I’m the Marketing Manager of Carrefour in Kuwait, I have 2 beautiful daughters Celina, 7 years old and Tiana is 3 years old. I have a very supportive and loving husband, I’m 42years old and I have never done a mammogram but once 10 years ago, when my mom was diagnosed as well as my aunt.
I never did an ultrasound nor another mammo after that until July 2018 when I felt I wanted to get one. Unfortunately, the radiologist didn’t accept to do a mammo for me because I wasn’t 40 yet and said that the result of my ultrasound was OK (unfortunately the cancer was there but he didn’t see it). During this time, I had a 6th sense that drove me to start following women who had breast cancer; a feeling was inside me that kept pushing me to read more and more about it. Meanwhile, I was getting sick a lot in the past couple of years. I used to smoke, my diet was very unhealthy and I was under a lot of stress in my life. Four months later (October 2018) while I was sitting in bed watching TV and my husband was sick next to me (I usually sleep directly but this time I couldn’t because I was watching over my husband), I felt a hand (I call it the hand of God) pinch me in my left and right breasts and I automatically put my finger where the tumor was; it was not apparent but something told me to keep on digging inside until I found the lump; I automatically knew that it was Breast Cancer without a doubt. Of course I didn’t sleep all night, started panicking and went the next day for a mammo and an ultrasound then an MRI for both breasts then a biopsy which confirmed I had Invasive Ductal Carcinoma with Lobular Features, hormone driven. January 14, 2019 was the date of my surgery; MRI and all other tests had confirmed that no lymph nodes were affected until I did the lumpectomy and the results came out with the following: Stage 1C Grade 2 Multifocal IDC with Lobular features ER 95%+, PR 90%+, HER2- & 1 positive lymph node that had no extra nodular extension. Oncologist recommended I did a test called Oncotype (for early breast cancer stage) to see if there was a benefit from Chemotherapy or not. After waiting 3 weeks, results came back with an Oncotype of 17 (Oncotype was applicable for negative nodes only, but they started applying it on 0-3 positive lymph nodes a couple of years back). So no, there was no benefit for me to do chemo but because the history of my mom and her not accepting the chemo and having her tumor come back after 9 years, I had this feeling inside that pushed me to ask other Drs. I sent my tests to Mexico, United States and went to Lebanon to see 3 doctors. The doctor in Mexico told me the type of lymph node I had didn’t require chemo, 1 doctor in the states said no chemo, the other said yes for chemo, 2 doctors in Lebanon said no chemo and 1 doctor was materialistic enough to greet me coming to him straight from Kuwait, telling me “Mrs. Loubna you will survive but you need to repeat all your tests, do chemo here in Lebanon and so on…”. In the end, I came back to Kuwait, and returned to God “Please God, you gave me the 1st sign to find my tumor and get saved, if I have no benefit from chemo please give me a sign; and he did. This led me into opting out of Chemo and straight to radiotherapy after 3 months of turbulence and sleepless nights. Meanwhile, I was following up with a health coach in Mexico the day I received the news that I had Cancer which led me into stopping sugar, meat, chicken, dairy products (my cancer was 95% hormone driven) loosing 15 kilos, carefully choosing what I eat and what products I use. I became a different person, my life changed upside down.
I finished radiotherapy, started Tamoxifen which is a hormone pill to prevent recurrence, I receive Zoladex injections every 3 months that put me into menopause and beside all that I take more than 20 supplements on a daily basis.
Cancer changed my life yes, but it taught me so much. It made me discover that I was a person who loved herself and her body, which led me to studying my disease, discovering loads and loads of supplements and off the label medicines that help prevent recurrence; it made me appreciate my family and my life. It actually made me a happier person (I know it’s kind of strange but I remember that I used to be depressed most of the time before the incident). Now I always try to live my life to the fullest, stay close to my daughters and husband, take care of myself and I always thank God that he’s always next to me and loves me that much.
Having Breast Cancer is not a death sentence. It’s just a wake-up call from God telling us to appreciate our lives.
Maria was the 1st person I followed before my diagnosis, we haven’t met but I always feel the strong bond between us whenever we communicate. Hopefully we will meet soon and exchange our thoughts; I’m always here, god-willing, if anybody needs help. In Kuwait, I don’t know any committees for breast cancer but would love to hear from people all around the world.
Together we are stronger!