Parrocchia Madre Teresa di Calcutta 

   Martinsicuro (TE)

RECOVERED FROM AN AGGRESSIVE AND RARE TUMOR

At the beginning of May, 2005, my sixty-year-old mother confided to me she had some genital blood-leaks. So I scheduled a gynaecologist’s appointment for her. Normally you have to wait about ten-days-time, but we were fortunate and we had the appointment the day after. When the doctor visited my mother, she immediately realized that something was going bad, and she booked day-hospital medical examination for my mother’s uterus for the following week. The day of the test, I went and took my mother to the hospital. Along the way she told me a dream she had some time before her blood-leaks. In her dream, she was in a hospital bed, and her father ( who had died three years before) was taking loving care of her; she was lying down on her side with an undressed shoulder, and she was complaining of the cold. Her father covered her with a bedspread and he caressed her with protective affection. I think that actually my grandfather “sheltered” her from something more terrible and fatal.

At the hospital, after preparations, she was taken to the operating theatre. Her operation shouldn’t have lasted long, but it lasted long instead. When the doctors came out, they were very upset for all they had seen inside! In the meantime my father and my brother arrived to the hospital, too. The doctors immediately said us that they didn’t know what it was, but they were certain that it was a malignant tumor, an “acute” and malignant tumor! It seemed that the world collapsed on us, the doctors advised us against telling it to our mum, at least as long as they would know what it was about.

It was on May 16th, we had a very bad week, and finally the doctor called us, and we went to the hospital. It was on May 22nd (Saint Rita’s day), and before going to the hospital, I went to my parish priest and tell him about my acute suffering for the happening facts. I asked him to say a prayer for my mum, and he comforted me. At the hospital the doctor told us about the medical report of the examination: in my mother’s uterus there were “very malignant and proliferating cells”. These cells didn’t belong to the uterus, and that was because the malignant tumor came from a different organ, it had expanded in other organs, or there was more than one tumor in the body. The most terrible fact was that the tumor was expanding itself in a proliferating way. So we began to live very terrible days, without our mum knowing. We had our cross to bear, and we carried it with courage and faith.

Surely our grandfather has pled with the Lord. We had two terrible and stressful weeks: the urgency of a total-body CAT scan, our first travel to Milan, our first appointment with an hematology-doctor in Pescara, because the cells taken from my mum’s uterus were similar to blood-cells.

In the meantime I decided to bring my mother to Loreto with a group of pilgrims; during the Macerata-Loreto pilgrimage I wrote a letter to pray to the Virgin Mary; my letter was burnt, with many others, in a great bonfire. We told our mum about her disease: her reaction and her mood were very important, because she had to keep hanging on! We all used to pray for her with rosary every evening, we asked everybody to tell rosary for my mum in common prayers for sick people, and we went to many prayer meetings in the sports palace in Martinsicuro.

The final medical report arrived from Rome, and it was terrible: Hodgkin’s disease, a malignant lymphoma. We went to the priest and he gave his blessing to my mum, in addition to the Anointing of the Sick and to a great comfort. An important doctor said to us that, in his twenty-five-year-job, he had seen only 6 cases of this tumor in Italy. That’s why the doctors of our hospital had not been able to tell us what to do. The doctors in Milan decided the therapy with the hematology-doctors from Pescara: at first they decided for 4 cycles of chemotherapy, then  the cycles became 6, because the tumor “had arrived” to the marrow. The tumor was at the fourth and last grade. The doctors ordered a CAT scan in Macerata, and finally a surgery in Milan. Meanwhile our suffering was bigger and bigger, on the other side our strength increased.

Chemotherapy had many side-effects, and we suffered from seeing our mother laying on her hospital-bed with a lot of needles in her arms. However, during those months I haven’t ever seen my mother discouraged, disheartened or angry; she was, instead, full of courage and above all Faith.

The therapy went on, there was also a osteo-marrow biopsy, and finally there was the surgery in Milan. The day before leaving, I brought my mother to our parish priest. He prayed for her and gave her the Anointing of the Sick. We asked for the intercession of my grandfather and of the Virgin Mary, too.

In Milan, my mother was ready for the surgery, when the doctor called us and told us that our mother’s pre-operative lab test DIDN’T SHOW ANY TRACES OF MALIGNANT TUMOR ANYMORE! He suggested my mum do the operation all the same: safety first! The surgery took place, and all the medical reports confirmed my mum’s COMPLETE HEALING!!!

Now it has passed more than one year, and my mother is fine: she can smile and live again. We thank and praise the Lord! I hope that my mother could be a testimony for suffering people: she always says that even when it’s dark, a glimmer shines, and slowly, at the end, LIGHT ALWAYS DEFEATS DARKNESS!!!