Aleks Patete had no idea she was sick. And there’s no telling how long it would have taken for doctors to diagnose the pregnant woman with ovarian cancer if not for her baby boy, DJ. So, when doctors suggested an abortion so she could start treating her cancer, Aleks refused.
When Aleks, a 28-year-old registered nurse, was 7-weeks pregnant with DJ, she went in for what she thought was just a routine ultrasound.
But that’s when the hospital staff noticed a cyst on her ovary. It turns out, Aleks had ovarian cancer.
"It's a miracle," Aleks said. "The cancer could have progressed a lot further, and we would have had no idea if I wasn't for my pregnancy. God sent DJ to save my life."
Aleks’ diagnosis was shocking enough. But then doctors told her and her husband, an elementary school custodian, they wanted Aleks to start aggressive chemotherapy. To do so, they suggested she abort her baby.
In This Together
Without hesitation, Aleks said there was no way she’d sacrifice DJ.
"He saved my life," she says. "Now it was my turn to save his life."
As a registered nurse, Aleks talked with the doctors and nurses at the hospital where she works about other chemo treatments. They developed a treatment plan for the pregnant woman with ovarian cancer. She would undergo a five-month chemo course requiring six rounds every four weeks.
"It was the hardest decision I've ever had to make," she says. "But we had to weigh our options - if I didn't do anything, I put my life at risk, if I did something, was I putting the baby at risk? It was extremely difficult."
Even though the staff assured Aleks this treatment plan held only a very small chance of affecting her baby, she couldn’t help but worry.
"As a mom, you don't want to do anything that could harm your baby," she says. "I was terrified, but they explained that it was a relatively safe option."
God Delivers Mom And Baby To Safety
Time proved that God had His hand all over this mom and baby. Each ultrasound showed DJ was still healthy. And so, Aleks continued with her chemo treatments.
The chemo routine ended just 3 weeks before the pregnant woman with ovarian cancer gave birth to DJ. Finally, her mind was at ease!
"It was just beautiful," she says of her son’s birth. "And he's the sweetest baby, always smiling and just a joy."
Soon after, Aleks went in for surgery to remove her right ovary and fallopian tube. The operation will help prevent further cancerous growth on her reproductive organs. The most important thing to Aleks is that the procedure ensured she is still able to have children in the future (unlike a full hysterectomy).
Doctors check Aleks every couple of months to make sure all is well, but so far, so good. Aleks remains in remission and is enjoying life with her beautiful gift from God, DJ.
And the whole experience has only deepened Aleks’ faith.
"I think about the things that could have happened and what could have gone wrong and there's no other reason than the grace of God that everything worked out and we are both alive,” she says. "I truly think God was watching over us."
What a blessing and a special bond these two share!
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