I was diagnosed with lung cancer three years ago. I was shamed and felt that it was my fault. As a result, I took a close look at my life: I am not a smoker and hardly drink alcohol. I am married, a mother of three children and everything is centred around our children. I had an extremely rewarding and demanding career, and my parents and relatives all live healthy and active lives. I did everything right according to the book, but nevertheless I was still diagnosed with cancer. I realized from this experience that anyone can get cancer, so I began this blog to raise awareness about it.
When I read the stories of ROS1’s Bloggers, it was eye opening. Three things stood out to me: 1) the experience (physically and emotionally) of those people gone through were just like mine, so I was not alone. I think being alone is the most horrible thing that a person can experience. 2) People attended conferences held for researchers, advocates and patients, with the goal to be educated, to network, to talk and to exchange experiences. 3) Different and intensive experiences in regards to travelling were mind boggling to me. I told myself after I read the experiences of ROS1’s Bloggers, that I am going to live like them. I am also going to tell my story and share my experiences for whatever it is worth.
Another reason I want to go public about my cancer experience is to give a face to cancer patients. We are facing the most daring challenge in our life. We get depressed, desperate and scared but we also live, love and laugh. We learn, grow and strive. People can have lives after cancer.
I hope my blog can raise the awareness that anybody can get cancer, and that even if you are diagnosed, you can still have a life after cancer.