Cobie Smulders speaks out about having ovarian cancer at 25
''I was being told it was most likely not a possibility to create my own children. It felt grossly unfair.''
In April 2015, Cobie Smulders starred on the cover of Women's Health and revealed in her interview that she suffered from ovarian cancer at 25.
Now, she has penned an essay on Lenny Letter, the same platform Alicia Keyes, and Ashley Graham used to speak about other women's issues.
The How I Met Your Mother actress wrote about why she decided to share her personal health story.
''It all made me start thinking about this body that I'm in. And what it has been through. And suddenly this bizarre invitation became an opportunity to share some insight from my experience of being diagnosed with, receiving treatment for, and eventually learning to cure my cancer.''
She wrote openly and honestly about how affects much more than just one's physical health.
''Anyone who has been diagnosed with cancer or even known someone who has been diagnosed with cancer is aware of its total mental, physical, and emotional possession. Hell, even if you haven't been closely affected, I'm sure you can easily conceptualize the thundercloud of shit that rains down on you.
I found myself in the center of such a storm in the spring of 2008, when I was 25. Just when your ovaries should be brimming with youthful follicles, cancerous cells overtook mine, threatening to end my fertility and potentially my life. My fertility hadn't even crossed my mind at this point. Again: I was 25. Life was pretty simple. But suddenly it was all I couldthink about.''
Cobie adds that she had always planned on being a mother.
''I've always wanted to have kids. So eventual mommyhood was something I very much thought was in my future. And now I was being told it was most likely not a possibility to create my own children. It felt grossly unfair.''
She explains that she felt early symptoms and acted quickly.
''Just before I was diagnosed, I had felt like something was off. My energy was low, I was just so tired all the time, and I felt a constant pressure on my abdomen that I could not explain. I listened to my body and immediately went to my gynecologist. She referred me to an oncologist at Cedars Sinai in Los Angeles who is an angel and helped me to put my fears aside and take action.''
She began a raw food diet, began meditating and practiced yoga. She went to healers and read books.
''Kinesiologists. Acupuncturists. Naturopaths. Therapists. Hormone therapists. Chiropractors. Dietitians. Ayurvedic practitioners''
''I really wish I could tell you what particular combination of these things, along with multiple surgeries, eventually gave me a clean bill of health. I wish everyone had access to all these treatments. I am aware of my situation, that I was incredibly fortunate to have had the means to explore any and all options. The good news is that these options are out there. You can do the research and find many different ways to help your body heal itself.''
Cobie went on to have two children in 2009 and 2015.
''Thankfully, gratefully, cancer did not get the best of me. The best of me now lives on in my two little women, baby girls I was lucky enough to be able to make with my own body.
But the thing is, I don't know if I will ever be free of my cancer — or, to be more specific, free from the fear of my cancer's return. Still, it has become for many people a livable disease, something that you learn to manage. And that's what I have done.''
She finished by offering advice to other women.
''It has taken a lot of patience with myself to get to where I am today. I am learning that in life it is OK to travel in darkness, not knowing what your next move is. I don't allow the stress of the unknown to affect my health, and I listen to my body when it sends me distress signals. I wish that we as women spent as much time on the well-being of our insides as we do with our looks on the outside. If you are going through something like this, I urge you to look at all your options. To ask questions. To learn as much as you can about your diagnosis. To breathe. To ask for help. To cry and to fight.''
You can read Cobie's essay in full here.