Hearing That You Have Cancer
I believe in life there are words that you want to hear, such as, "Yes you've won", or "I'm happy to tell you you've got the job". So I suppose being told you have cancer is the last thing in life you want to hear or indeed accept. On the 25th of April 2017, I was told exactly that. I knew there was a problem within my bladder, but because my glass is always half full, I went to my appointment at the urology department confident that the camera being inserted to investigate my bladder would find a problem that was easily dealt with. I couldn't believe that 5 minutes after this procedure the specialist was telling me that I have a tumour in my bladder that is probably cancer.
The severity of the situation struck
Everything that follows this news is a slight blur. I'm spoken to by a couple of specialist nurses and asked to fill in a number of forms. I'm given some vital information on bladder cancer and told I will be having surgery within the next 2 weeks to remove my tumour. I didn't react how I thought I would to such devastating news. I may have been in shock, because I felt no sadness. I didn't get angry. I listened as best I could to the professionals and followed instructions on what to do next. It only dawned on me the severity of my situation when a nurse asked if I have any children. This brought the reality and tears because I then started thinking about possibly dying and leaving behind my 2 girls and granddaughter and for me more worryingly having to tell them that I have cancer. Fortunately for me my daughters were away on a cruise so I had time to prepare for that.
The world becomes a different place when you've been diagnosed with cancer. I felt quite vulnerable initially being out in public. I felt like I was hiding something of great magnitude from all those around me and worried they would know just by looking at me. Once you've gone through the pain of telling those closest to you, it does get a lot easier. I've never complained about life's unfortunate events and refused to succumb to any self-pity. My thoughts on survival is that someone is always worse off and cancer is definitely not selective. Cancer can be brutal and takes the lives of babies, so I need to remain thankful that I've had a life and will continue to live life to the maximum for as long as I can.
How long did you wait before telling others about your diagnosis?