“RHOM”'s Julia Lemigova Looks Back on 'Punching Fear in the Face' amid Wife Martina Navratilova's Cancer Journey

Lemigova had an emotional conversation with her 'Real Housewives of Miami' star Guerdy Abraira, who was also diagnosed with cancer in the last year and sought advice from Navratilova, at BravoCon

<p>Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty</p> Julia Lemigova and Martina Navratilova.

Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty

Julia Lemigova and Martina Navratilova.

Julia Lemigova is opening up about supporting her wife Martina Navratilova through her cancer treatments.

The Real Housewives of Miami star, 51, reflected her wife's difficult cancer journey at the BravoCon’s Housewife2Housewife: The New Wave of Wives panel on Saturday.

"I faced the most difficult year of my life this year because Martina was fighting two cancers at the same time. Now she's cancer free," she said. "So after having this fear, and like punching the fear in the face, we have cancer knocking on our door once or twice this year, and seeing Martina fight like, I admire her so much."

"She inspired me like if she could beat cancer, l I could punch the fear out of my heart and just be who I want to be loud and proud," she added.

Related: 'RHOM' Star Julia Lemigova Says 'We Will Fight This' After Wife Martina Navratilova's Cancer Diagnoses

<p>Clive Brunskill/Getty</p> Julia Lemigova and Martina Navratilova.

Clive Brunskill/Getty

Julia Lemigova and Martina Navratilova.

Later in the conversation, the Bravo star admitted it was "double hard" to see both her wife and her RHOM costar Guerdy Abraira being diagnosed with cancer in the same year. Abraira, 45, revealed she had breast cancer in May.

"As a caretaker, you don't know in the beginning what to expect and what to do," Lemigova said. "But then you listen to your heart and try to see what your loved one needs the most. So I listened to Martina I was there for her all the time...I didn't take anything personally because you have to come with them as number one and then you forget yourself but it's out of love."

"It was so hard. And Martina and Julia, we had lunch. Martina gave me advice," Abraira added as she broke down in tears. "She goes, 'Be selfish,' and I was like that was hardest thing for me to do is be selfish. And I was and that’s what put me here today to be healthier."

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PEOPLE confirmed in January that Navratilova, 67, was diagnosed with throat and breast cancer at the end of 2022. She had first been diagnosed with breast cancer and declared cancer-free in 2010.

Lemigova previously spoke to PEOPLE in early March about how her wife’s cancer diagnosis had shifted her attitude and outlook on life.

"After your wife is diagnosed with two cancers, it really changes your perspective," the reality star said. "We all have to be strong for her. There is no time for sitting around and crying.

"I'm a strong believer that when life hits you with a tragedy, no matter how big the tragedy is, you have basically two choice: You submit or you push back and rebel," she explained. "And all my life I was, I'm a rebel in a way, and I always push back. So this is just one of those huge tragedies that hit our family. And there is no time or space to sit and cry because that will not help. That will only make things worse."

Related: Martina Navratilova's 2 Cancer Diagnoses Put Adoption Plans 'On Hold,' Wife Julia Lemigova Says

<p>Charles Sykes/Bravo</p> Julia Lemigova and Martina Navratilova.

Charles Sykes/Bravo

Julia Lemigova and Martina Navratilova.

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A few weeks later, Navratilova announced that she was cancer-free. In a separate interview conducted a couple days after the news broke, Lemigova gushed to PEOPLE about how she was “so proud” of her wife for surviving her cancer diagnoses.

"I don't even have the words to say how proud I am of my champion for playing singles against the nastiest double partners she ever faced in her life, and beating them both triumphantly. She amazes me every day,” Lemigova said.

"I have no idea what the future shows, really don't. I'm just happy to be healthy. I'm happy that Martina is healthy," she added. "Just thanking life for giving us good news, and that we have each other."

After tying the knot back in 2014, Lemigova and Navratilova became the first same-sex couple to ever appear as full-time cast members on the Real Housewives franchise since it launched on Bravo in 2006.

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