KEETMANSHOOP - The proverbial saying of ‘where there is a will there is a way’ can in many ways befit Annely Humphries, who shared her life journey of troubles, including overcoming cancer, with New Era.
“I was a very sick child at birth; I lost my eyesight for six months at a tender age of eight,” the 51-year-old Humphries narrated.
She continued that at the age of 13, she was diagnosed with rheumatic fever, forcing her to receive school lessons from her hospital bed for two years.
As if that was not enough suffering, she was later diagnosed with a heart problem, which severely impacted her valves.
“The doctors guaranteed me a lifespan of only six months by then, and advised me not to have kids,” continued Humphries.
Through her belief and persistence, she survived, got married and was able to conceive.
She carried on by stating that she has been diagnosed with breast cancer in February 2018.
“I was subjected to scans, biopsies and sonar tests after this to determine the exact nature of the cancer,” expressed Humphries.
She continued explaining that lymph glands were removed from her breast during the first operation.
“After the operation, I started with chemotherapy, and this was when the doctors discovered that I am suffering from a type of cancer found in one out of four women,” she added.
According to her, this type of cancer is deadly because the signs can vanish periodically, making it grow more harmful internally.
“I got a stroke after my fifth chemotherapy session – and to make things worse, I developed severe high blood pressure, ending up at the high care unit in hospital,” she described.
It was also later discovered that she had blood clots in her veins.
“The jugular veins on my neck made it very difficult for me to breathe properly and could not be removed surgically due to the high medical risk attached to such a procedure.”
Humphries further explained that the cancerous tissue has been removed from her affected breast in September 2018.
“After numerous tests and treatment, doctors confirmed on 17 October 2019 I was supposed to be dead already, suffering from all these medical hardships, but my faith and perseverance keep me alive,” she justified.
Humphries further encouraged people to never give up hope.
“Celebrate life and give hope to others,” she remarked.
On average, 3 000 Namibians are diagnosed with cancer annually.
The common types of cancer are skin, breast, prostate, cervical, blood vessel, colon and oral cavity.
Warning signs of it include, amongst others, lumps, swelling in the body, change in bowel habits or bladder functions, persistent coughing, unusual bleeding or discharging, recent change in moles or wards, consistent weight loss, and recurrent diarrhoea.
The causes of cancer are more lifestyle related, including smoking, alcohol, high sugary diets, lack of exercise, unhealthy diets, stress, and obesity, among others.