Dark days no more for singer Jocie Guo
After a long spell away, Jocie Guo is back with a new album
Local singer Jocie Guo went off the grid for the past six years after being embroiled in a case of mistaken identity involving a notorious Chinese blogger with the same Chinese name in 2011.
Guo was mistaken for Guo Meimei, a then 20-year-old who flaunted her extravagant lifestyle and was unapologetically open about being the mistress of a rich older man. The blogger was one of the most hated personalities on the Internet.
The singer's good name ended up being dragged through the mud, and her work engagements were cancelled due to the negative association.
Little did fans know that, around the same time, Guo was also grappling with a medical condition called endometriosis.
A common health problem in women, endometriosis is when the tissue that normally lines the uterus or womb grows outside of the uterus.
Guo initially thought she was suffering from something much worse.
The doe-eyed 36-year-old had burst onto the Mandopop scene in the mid-2000s with ditties Mouse Loves Rice and No More Panic.
At a press conference to promote her comeback album My Name. Guo told The New Paper: "The doctor told me it might be a malignant tumour, and that in the worst-case scenario, I would have to remove my ovaries and womb.
That was when I realised how much I love singing.Jocie guo on what she learnt about herself during her health crisis
"I was stunned. But the first thing that came to my mind was, 'Can God have mercy on me and let me organise my last concert before I die?' That was when I realised how much I love singing."
She first noticed that something was not right when she had three periods in a month. She then went for a check-up.After two scans, doctors discovered a "hard lump... the size of a ping pong ball" surrounding the left side of her ovary.
Exploratory surgery was recommended, and Guo had to mentally prepare herself for the possibility of waking up with no ovary and womb, or that she could die.
"When I was on the operating table, I cried a bit," said Guo.
She ended up undergoing a keyhole operation, and the official diagnosis was a benign blood cyst due to endometriosis.
It was successfully removed and she was hospitalised for two days.
Thankful for her second chance in life, Guo now lives every day like it is her last.
She paid tribute to her mother, who cared for her during her six-month recovery period.
Guo said: "I felt weak for two whole weeks and had to be careful with my movements and diet. It also hurt when I sat down on the sofa, so my mum sewed a cushion for me to sit on."
Six years on, Guo has not had any repercussions following her medical scare.
"I have to go for half-yearly check-ups, which I have not done so in more than a year. But I will be going soon," she said.