Community Connection: Ovarian Cancer Canada is looking for volunteers! Could you help?

OVdialogue – consider joining our team in the role of Peer Support Volunteer. Over a few hours each week, you would be part of a team that helps connect people, support conversations and are thought leaders for OVdialogue. This is your opportunity to give back to those who have/continue to support you through the tough times, share your unique experiences, and help celebrate successes. For more details of what this entails, please reach out to @Mfallis (

Hello from Vancouver

Hi ladies, My name is Tammy. Diagnosed in November (2021, so very recently) with Stage 4A high grade serous carcinoma. Very shocking. Have already undergone two rounds of chemo, pretty rough "go," and start round three next week (January). All very overwhelming and scary - but trying to stay positive and hopeful. I have a kind husband and fierce 18 year old daughter who need me - and of course many friends and family. So feeling like I have a whole army of love behind me, so I'm really very lucky. Sounds like I will be getting debulking surgery in a month or so. Would love to hear any positive stories, or experiences with debulking - I'm a bit scared. But also trying to be a warrior. :)


  • Fearless_Moderator
    Hi @tomtam3 I'm so glad you found our community but very sorry for your diagnosis.  Feeling afraid, and, in fact, any of a whole range of emotions when diagnosed and while you go through treatment is very normal. So is the feeling you have to be a "warrior".  That one is not necessary.  Feel whatever it is you need to feel emotionally.  

    You're so lucky to have a great support system. I still feel that the bond I have with my husband and my son (now 33) is one of the reasons for my survival.  We joke that I suffer a major case of FOMA so I'm not about to leave them any time soon. And so far, even though I will never be cured as I have recurrent OVC, I am now in year 6 of treatment and still going strong.

    You will find lots of stories on OVdialogue of members who continue to thrive. Some in complete remission. Others like me who have learned to live successfully with the disease. In he past few years since I was diagnosed there have been major advancements in research and treatments so it's now less a matter of luck than just good and capable disease management I like to credit for increased longevity.

    Do use the Ovarian Cancer Canada site as your best resource for information. And it's chock full of survivor stories.  And if you haven't already, order their booklet By Your Side. It's an excellent guide that will answer many of your questions, help you prepare for each step of treatment.  

    OVdialogue an our community is always at your disposal anytime of day or night to ask questions or research the experiences of others.  We also hold a live online chat every Thursday at 1pm EST where we talk about everything from our disease to the weather. But it's  a great forum to get immediate response to questions you might have or, better yet, a group to help celebrate those successes along the way. You need only sign in to OVdialogue and click on the discussion topic TEAL THURSDAY  to enter the discussion.   OCC also runs monthly zoom  gatherings for survivors to connect real time. They're called Teal Teas and I keep the schedule and links up to date on our home page here.  

    I can understand your concerns about surgery and this journey you're on. Rest assured they've been shared by every one of our members. You're entering territory unfamiliar to you so it's normal to have fears. I can tell you that I was terrified of surgery when it came my time. Other than to have my son I'd never been hospitalized for anything but ended up pleasantly surprised with how easy it all went for me.  Full debulking, hysterectomy..the works and I woke up pain free and home in five days, where recovery was much faster than I had expected.  Then into chemo for six cycles and I can tell you I rang that bell in the chemo room so loud that day it was over.  Sure there is some discomfort but I found open and honest communication with my cancer care team and the nurses in the chemo room ensured that any discomfort I was feeling was dealt with quickly and efficiently.  

    Please keep us posted on your progress. Reach out here with any questions or concerns. And this community is here for you....if only to lend an ear or give you a place to vent or cry where it's safe and non judgemental any time you need it.  

    Good luck with your treatment.  Our thoughts are with you......
  • Hi Tammy, the surgeon’s out of VGH are amazing, no worries there.  And the care @ the Gyno ward is top notch. I felt I was in good hands. Where are you having your chemo done, either Vanc. or Surrey? You’ll receive a surgical preparation booklet once you have a surgical date, chalked full of info. You’ll have to let me know which surgeon you get, like I said, there’ll all excellent.
    I wish you well !!
  • Hello Fearless and Lucy, Thank you so, so much for your open and honest responses and positive information. Thank you for sharing your stories. My surgery is March now, as they wanted to do one more chemo. It's great to hear from people who have been through this, and I will have to check out Teal Thursdays sometime for sure. You both sound like amazing women, and I so appreciate your responses. Makes me feel a little less frightened, but also that it's normal to feel that way. Again, I am very grateful for the time you both took to welcome me and share your stories.
  • Fearless_Moderator
    @tomtam3 I'm so glad we could be of some comfort and support to you.  These journeys we take are full of twists and turns so expect the unexpected, and often that's good news so don't lose hope.  We're here if you need us and even if you don't love to get updates on how you're doing.  And yes, love to have you join  a Teal Thursday when the mood suits.  Big hugs for now,