She loves spending time at home playing doggy games with her mini dachshund, Roxy, while spending time with her husband. And in 2021, Beverly Mullins is making all the memories she can since being diagnosed with two, different forms of cancer just four years ago.
“It started as what I thought was a recurring bladder infection in the spring of 2017,” Mullins, who lives in Tunnel Hill, Georgia, said. “I would use over-the-counter medication and the symptoms would go away for a while. But then they would come back and by December, it was much worse. So, I decided it was time to see my family doctor.”
What her doctor told her, was that Mullins had both renal cell carcinoma in her kidney and transitional cell carcinoma in her bladder. After starting the new year off preparing for cancer treatment, Mullins made the trip to Augusta, Georgia for her first appointment with Dr. Martha Terris. It came after the urologist she was referred to in Dalton, told her he did his residency training under Dr. Terris and knew she provide excellent care to treat Mullins’ cancer.
“After being diagnosed, I started calling various hospitals and organizations looking for help,” Mullins said. “I didn’t have the money to afford treatment and wasn’t sure what I could do. I just knew I wanted to live and would do whatever it took to survive these two cancers. Learning about Dr. Terris and the urologist’s connection to her was like an answered prayer from God.”
When Mullins first arrived at the Georgia Cancer Center, she and her husband, John, were thankful for Terris and her team of residents who explained the treatment option she had for her kidney cancer. This, after her urologist in Dalton had removed the cancer from her bladder. Now, it was time for Terris to remove her entire kidney to prevent the cancer from spreading to another part of her body.
“Everything went so fast after that first appointment with Dr. Terris,” Mullins said. “But it also went so smoothly and I was having surgery less than four months after being diagnosed with cancer. Having the Georgia Cancer Center here means life for me thanks to Dr. Terris and her team.”
Mullins said her faith in God and her trust in Terris, her team and their plan after treatment have her feeling confident about her future. And, she has this message for other cancer patients who may hear her story.
“It is okay to feel your feelings,” she said. “One day you may be happy and filled with joy, while the next day you are angry and frustrated with the cancer, the treatment, and how it is affected your body. That’s okay. You need to feel how you feel. But, remember to keep pushing forward and living to make memories and be present for the life you have.”