Becky Anderson was overjoyed when she found out she was pregnant in May 2016. However, her joy quickly turned to fear when the results from a pap smear revealed she had cervical cancer.
Doctors recommended a hysterectomy as soon as possible. Anderson refused.
At 15 weeks pregnant, tests showed that the cancer was still localized in the cervix. This was a huge relief for Anderson, as it took chemotherapy off the table.
However, her doctors were still seriously concerned about her health if she continued to delay her hysterectomy. The cancer could spread if left untouched for several more months. She really needed to begin treatment immediately.
They again advised her to terminate the pregnancy.
But Anderson didn’t even consider aborting the fetuses. She stayed firm in her decision, especially knowing that her eventual hysterectomy would erase any chance of her having kids in the future. The babies in her womb were the last she’d ever have.
She decided to delay the surgery until after the birth of her twin boys.
“I never gave my decision a moment’s thought — there was no way I was getting rid of my precious babies,” Anderson told The Sun. “I kept thinking that their lives were just starting while mine could be ending, but it was a risk I was willing to take.”
The young mom from England has two older children, and found it difficult to tell them about her diagnosis. She struggled to accept the diagnosis herself.
Anderson spent the remainder of her pregnancy in and out of the hospital. Biopsies of her cervix made her bleed, and left her with a higher risk of miscarriage. She worried about her boys.
At 30 weeks, doctors told her she shouldn’t delay any longer. She was told that the twins were healthy enough to survive outside the womb. They scheduled a cesarean section and a hysterectomy for the same day.
Preslee was born weighing 3 lb 7oz, and Buddy was born weighting 3 lb 6oz. Both were healthy, but still needed extra care. Hours after they were whisked away to the NICU (neonatal intensive care unit), Anderson was given her hysterectomy.
“I had a team of at least 20 doctors in the theatre with me, either delivering my twins or waiting to remove my womb afterwards,” Anderson told The Sun. “It was a blur.”
She couldn’t see her baby boys for the first four days after surgery — days that were intensely painful and difficult for her.
When she finally did see her boys, they were still in incubators, since they had been delivered so early. But they were okay, and so was Anderson.
Four weeks later, she was discharged.
Anderson is now healthy, and so are her beautiful boys.
C. Dixon likes to read, sing, eat, drink, write, and other verbs. She enjoys cavorting around the country to visit loved ones and experience new places, but especially likes to be at home with her husband, son, and dog.