Uterine cancer survivor finds miracles in her rare experience

Jan de Chambrier had always envisioned herself as a mother to several children. In 1990, she and her husband were on their way to fulfilling that desire when they found out they were expecting twins. Then she suffered a miscarriage. And the news got worse from there. “They discovered a tumor behind the uterus,” says Jan, who was 37 at the time. “It was unusual because at that age, women are not diagnosed with uterine cancer. I was told that it was a miracle that I conceived given that I had this type of cancer in my body.” Losing the ability to bear children after uterine cancer treatment As part of her uterine cancer treatment, Jan had to undergo a complete hysterectomy. “I went overnight from being pregnant to being menopausal,” she says. “It kind of rocked our world.” Jan struggled with the emotional impact of her treatment for a year and a half. Then her husband helped her gain a new perspective: Her story wasn’t a tragedy; it was a miracle because if it wasn’t for her pregnancy, no one would’ve discovered the tumor until it was too late. “That’s really what turned the corner for me,” Jan says. Eventually, she and her husband adopted a son, Paul, and in 1994, the family moved to The Woodlands, Texas from Denver, Colorado. A rare uterine cancer recurrence After more than two decades in remission, Jan noticed a lump in her lower abdomen in January 2016. “I thought it was a hernia because it had been 26 years since my diagnosis,” she says. Jan’s family doctor examined the lump during...