Monday, October 15, 2012

A Woman Named Jocelyn

My name is Dan. And I support Endometrial Cancer Awareness.

Why – you might ask – would a guy like me advocate something which he is totally and physiologically exempt from? Yes, Endometrial Cancer is a silent killer of women, and I could support other causes; however, this issue is particularly close to my heart and let me tell you why.

It’s about a woman named Jocelyn.

She was a firecracker, a thunderbolt of sorts. It’s impossible not to notice Jocelyn even if you throw her amid a cacophony of jungle animals. She never failed to light up any dull and dreary room with her burst of energy. Jolly, funny, witty, and happy are among the many things people would often use to describe Jocelyn. She was a painter of smiles on everyone’s faces and a refreshing ray of warm sunlight on a cold, gloomy day. She once said that perhaps her only mission in this world was to cheer up those who were down. But to those who loved her, she was much more.

She was only 4’9” (or 5’1” depending on who’s asking), but she could effortlessly tower anyone twice her size with the enormity of her personality. Jocelyn was a brave little warrior against life’s innumerable and oftentimes extravagant tribulations. With nothing but a chill pill and a purple sword in tow, she was always ready to vanquish many of life’s fire-breathing dragons, especially the one that’s called negativity. She’s arguably one of the most positive people anyone could ever meet. Good vibes always and smile, she would always say. Funny, little girl.

A few days after she turned 53, she was diagnosed with cancer. Endometrial Carcinoma. Stage 4. A little over a year after – on June 13, 2011 – she died peacefully in her home in Dipolog City.

She was my mother.

The first time I learned about the diagnosis, my reaction wasn’t anywhere near the histrionics we see in the movies – no explosive theatrics, no hair-tearing, no crazy wailing of cinematic proportion. It was my Aunt Viola, my mom’s sister, who broke the news. And although I had the immediate reaction of most people, it was coupled with a scratch on the head, oddly. “Endo-what? H-how? Wh-? Huh?” I thought it was just a silly joke, a heartless prank and that I would then be that it’s April Fools! But no.

Like most people I spoke with, I didn’t have the faintest idea what Endometrial Carcinoma was. I knew what carcinogens are. Mom would always warn me about the dangers of eating burnt barbeque. They’re carcinogenic and carcinogens could kill you y’know, she would always say. But what about Endometrium? What is that? Too technical if you take it at face value; it sounded like something on the Periodic Table of Elements.

But seriously, what is that?

Endometrial Cancer was as exotic to me as the Martian volcanoes. It was as though a green blinking steamy rock feel from godknowswhere and hit me right smack on my massive forehead. “What is that … thing!?”

Before we progress, though, for the benefit of everyone reading this blog (yeah, the three of you), allow me to provide you with some quick facts regarding this green blinking alien thing called Endometrial Cancer.
Cancer of the lining of the uterus, the endometrium, is the most common gynecologic cancer and ranks seventh among causes of female cancer deaths.
The average woman who develops uterine cancer is in her early 60s.

A small number of uterine cancers (three percent) are sarcomas, a type of cancer that grows in the muscular and connective tissue elements of the uterus.

I am male. I do not have a uterus and never will I have any uterine linings with which cancerous cells could latch onto while it nurtures itself into becoming a life-draining monstrosity. I have an appendage, thank you very much. And it is physically impossible, scientifically implausible, and logically improbable that I will ever get Endometrial Cancer. So what gives?

The epiphany came to me one day while my sister and I were having a rather animated conversation about our plans for Mom’s first death anniversary. While my sister was having a mental vomit on the exciting plans that she hoped to carry on June 13th, it suddenly occurred to me. Looking at my sister, I realized that she’s the only girl standing out of the five immediate family members that I originally have. And I was sure as hell that I don’t want to lose her or anyone to Endometrial Cancer – ever again.

Yes, I am a guy. And I have other roles that I actively take part in this life. I am a brother to an amazing sister. I am a nephew to my supportive aunts. I am a Kuya to my loving female cousins. I am a grandson to a doting grandma. I am a boyfriend to a fantastic girlfriend. And on top of that, I have a throng of wonderful female friends and colleagues. I know in my heart that I don’t want to lose any of them to Endometrial Cancer.

Whenever I go to my mom to rant, whine, grumble, and complain about any issue imaginable – whether it be about work or school or my siblings or even a little mud on the side of my shoe – she would always rattle off a litany of things to say about the topic at hand. But almost always, she would end it with a provocative question – “So … what can YOU do about it?”

How about you? What can YOU do about Endometrial Cancer?

My name is Dan. And I support Endometrial Cancer Awareness.


For Jocelyn “Joji” Adriatico Aleta,
the woman who taught me how to
live and love and is now
my shining star.
I love you, Ma.

Disclaimer: Except for the picture of my Mom, the other photos on this post are not the author’s own.


  1. My mother is suffering to endometrial cancer too...and now she's in the battle,she experience tremendous depression eeventhough she didn't say mom now is 53, and can't able to walk because she was bedridden 20days of her critical stage..

  2. I am 29 years old and have been diagnosed with breast cancer, ease of treatment and a similar story, except for my first acceptance as a rejection of herbal medicine. I was not part of the Perseid movement and did not really build relationships with any of them, I just believed in their operation. I say this because it was during the use of Dr. Itua herbal medicine that I now attest that herbal medicine is real, the phytotherapy Dr. Itua heal my breast cancer which I suffered for 2 years. Dr. Itua herbal medicine is made of natural herbs, with no side effects, and easy to drink. If you have the same breast cancer or any type of human illness, including HIV / AIDS, herpes cancer,Ovarian Cancer,Pancratics cancers, bladder cancer, bladder cancer, prostate cancer, Glaucoma., Cataracts,Macular degeneration,Cardiovascular disease,Autism,Lung disease.Enlarged prostate,Osteoporosis.Alzheimer's disease,psoriasis ,Tach Diseases,Lupus,Endomertil Cancer,
    Dementia.kidney cancer, lung cancer, skin cancer, skin cancer and skin cancer.testicular Cancer,Lupus, , LEUKEMIA, VIRUSES, HEPATITIS, INFERTILITY WOMEN / MAN, LOT OF LOVE, LOTTERY. ITS CONTACT EMAIL / WHATSAPP: Or +2348149277967