Cancer survivor

Having a social, cultural and religious heritage that is well saturated with guilt (at least when I grew up), shame and guilt would be a constant companion and shadow that would weigh heavily on me. The essence of the intuitive and conscious belief was that 'I am bad'.
We all need to feel safe and at times we can only get that by withdrawing into our bubble to feel anchored and grounded. Then there are those bubbles that can make us feel cut off, separate and disconnected from others and the world around us. If you really think about it, bubbles are there, for all of us, all of the time. Life can be about navigating bubbles.
There are many connotations around cancer; that it affects old people and middle aged women. That women only really get breast cancer. That teenagers can't get cancer. However seven young people are diagnosed with cancer in the UK every day. That's over 2,500 new cases every year, and these statistics don't include relapses of illness.
Our time here is short. Stating the bleeding obvious but time, once lost, is gone forever. Why then do we sometimes treat it with such disrespect? Why do we put things off until we retire, or until next year, or trudge through the weekdays, yearning for the weekend?
A day later the results were back and it wasn't good news. It was cancer. I was totally stunned and broke down in tears. We were all shell shocked - I never in my wildest dreams thought it would be cancer.
I never expected to become a cancer patient, not least in my teens. Then again, I don't think anyone does. But somehow, like the approximately 2,300 annual others, in 2011 I found myself well and truly within this category.
Cancer in children and young people is quite rare, but is does happen. It happened to me and it was horrible. It was a whole year before I was diagnosed and I think that if the doctors I saw had listened to me and taken my symptoms a bit more seriously that it would have been caught sooner.
Once treatment had finished and my hair was growing back I decided to go out into the dating world which was one of the scariest things I had to do - I thought 'no one wants to date someone that has had cancer!' But in December I met someone and we are still together.
Being diagnosed with cancer is inexplicably tough. But it can also be equally hard-going for those around you, who haven't
It's hard to know what to say to someone who has undergone a traumatic, life-changing event such as a cancer diagnosis. People are terrified of saying the wrong thing. Although nothing you say to a person with cancer can make it any worse for them, behaving authentically towards them can make a positive difference.
Everyone wants to believe he is immune to cancer, especially the young. But it is time that we abandoned the false sense of security inherent in the myth that we are too young for cancer. Doing so would lower the rate of late-stage diagnoses, improve outcomes, and create more inclusive and supportive communities for patients and survivors.
I found myself just crying for no real reason, I couldn't sleep, I'd often wake up with tears streaming down my face and I found it really difficult to articulate what was going on. Mortality had smacked me in face again and at least some part of me felt shattered, whether that be my loss of innocence, my sense of who I was, my view on time, my view on what next.
A change in focus. A change in priorities. A change in what matters most. Something I've experienced and heard so much in the past few months. Cancer really has a way of throwing everything up in the air, with it landing in different places than thrown.
Cancer can be as overwhelming for loved ones as it is for the patient and can sometimes change relationships in unexpected ways, including the effect it can have on marriages and intimate relationships.
When we find out that a friend or relative has cancer, it often brings out the best, or the worst, in us. It can turn us into super-attentive, meal-making, help-giving super mates, or send us shuffling, scared, in the opposite direction.
Recovering from breast cancer treatment isn't just about the medication and the affects it had on your body; it's also about healing your mental state and grasping that new outlook on life. Post cancer, I now think of my life in 2 parts; my 'old' life and my 'new' life and in the latter, I take more time in making my decisions whilst also seeking new experiences.
But in order to not look back at 2013 as a year of tragedy, loss and bad news, I'm trying my hardest to focus on the fighting spirit it has caused so many of us to employ.
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Researchers have found that young black women aged 40 or younger in the UK have a higher risk of breast cancer coming back