All posts filed under: Cancer Diaries

Approaching Bilateral Mastectomy…

Hi again – I’m back with another video diary.  Take a look below, I know as a writer, I have mostly just blogged and written in a traditional sense… yet I’m finding a peaceful and therapeutic benefit in doing these video diaries.  Writing takes time and energy and for me, I’m either naturally drawn to it (that’s when I do my best work) or I’m not.  Lately, the thought of typing out my emotions is just not calling me.  Yet to film whatever comes to mind is seeming to prove a beneficial process for me (whether people watch or not). To update my readers if you’re not on Instagram.  I have been diagnosed with Breast Cancer again.  This diagnosis comes just shy of my four year anniversary which was brutal news to hear.  My previous blog post HERE is my first video diary where I begin to share what the experience is like second time around. Bec x   P.S. I’m having a lot of trouble uploading my videos and making them small enough to share …

Breast Cancer… AGAIN!

This video diary was unplanned and somewhat just happened.  In a split second I felt compelled to talk (and I was alone) so I chose to record myself.  I didn’t have a plan of what to say or whether there would be a theme of any sort, I think sometimes you just (well, me as a writer does anyway) have this overwhelming need to get an idea or a passing thought down on paper.  I love journalling and this is exactly that.  It’s not exciting, its just real – it’s me talking candidly about my new diagnosis and how I’m coping with it.  This video diary in the very moment of recording (Friday 29th July 2018 at 6.02pm), made me feel less alone and less inside my own head – it was extremely therapeutic.   Big ideas for blogs, for my book, or just in general come to me all the time, yet sometimes through the formality of writing and structuring, it can become too edited, too perfected.  In this video blog… it’s just me …

Mindset… a Powerful Tool

Mindset definition: the established set of attitudes held by someone. Today I had my breast MRI and I will start by saying… I am really proud of myself (insert huge smiley face)! Scans after a cancer diagnosis – sadly become part of your life. Whether you like it or not, you will continue to be monitored, checked and scanned through a variety of medical interventions. Back in June, my scans showed changes – these were followed up with biopsies, which was not a pleasant time in our life, however, we received AMAZING benign results and an action to do a follow up scan in six months instead of twelve. The reason for my blog, is not really to tell you the ins and outs of scans etc. but instead to discuss the psychology of going through these motions; and behaviours and feelings in which arise on these occasions. Why am I proud of myself, you ask? Is it: Because I got through the one hour long scan with both my hands above my head and …

More than Survival

Anna’s Story Allow me to tell the story of a fellow cancer survivor – where I have the honour of sharing a triumphant process of a woman regaining control and injecting choice back into her life. A stark comparison to the cancer process where choice is usually in limited supply.   Choice and control is more powerful than you think… Often, like a lot of things in life, until you loose something, you don’t necessarily value its importance. This is a story of an incredible woman exercising choice and control to nourish her soul and bring a feeling of peace back to her heart, after feeling torment for so long. Anna suffered from breast cancer at 35, then again at 42 (parotid gland cancer) and then again (yes, again) when she was 47, breast cancer (triple negative). She’s had 20 surgeries, 8 chemotherapy sessions, 60 radiotherapy treatments and various complications along the way that could probably fill a book (maybe she’ll let me write that one day)? I titled this story ‘More than Survival’ and …

That’s A Wrap

Woweeee…. What a month and what an experience to write specifically about my life before, during and after breast cancer. It certainly took me back in time that’s for sure and that in itself wasn’t always easy. Every time I completed an article I would find myself with mixed emotions… Pure joy… in celebrating how far I have come physically and mentally. Fear… because talking about it, refreshed the question of what if I suffer a recurrence? Gratitude… for the fact my words reached and touched so many people, I was incredibly moved by the kind, honest and grateful feedback I received. Anxiety… both from a little pressure on myself to write well and often, but mostly the emotions being felt all over again, leaving you with that sick feeling in the pit of my stomach. When I wrote, my memories were felt vividly. Bravery… I respect myself so much more having reflected on what I went through and bravery in the fact that I shared really personal aspects of my life for the world to …

One Life – The Blog in the Media

The month of October is breast cancer awareness month across all fundraising organisations such as the Cancer Council, Jane McGrath, National Breast Cancer Foundation, Pink Hope and the list goes on. In particular, the Cancer Council host pink ribbon day each year and the Riverina celebrated this day on Friday of last week. Nationally, pink ribbon day is tomorrow (24 October). Last week I was both surprised and honoured, in being asked to comment on two media avenues. Firstly the beautiful Nicole Barlow approached me to do a personal story in light of pink ribbon day, she wrote a lovely piece in the Daily Advertiser and I felt extremely appreciative of the fact they found my blog beneficial in awareness, hence promoting it to other woman in the Riverina. I first met Nicole over twelve months ago when I was an ambassador for the Biggest Morning tea (see story here).   I felt extremely happy when Nicole and I were talking and reflecting on my life and what I’ve been up to since we chatted …

The Bad Days

I was reviewing journal entries when I came across one in particular… the pit of my stomach immediately dropped, I felt sick and reading the words took me back to a place where I wasn’t ‘good’. It’s an angry day, a poor me day and reading it back, pains me with sadness I’m going so well now, however, this is a dark reminder of the pain anyone endures in a battle against cancer. Today and the next two days touch on subjects that aren’t lollipops and rainbows.  Whilst my outlook on life is one to be excited about, it wasn’t always like that.  In terms of raising awareness, I owe it to fellow fighters, survivors and lifers to paint a picture of reality as well as the joys when you finally get out the other side. Please enjoy (maybe ‘enjoy’ is not the right word, maybe… please watch with an open mind and consider all people who have faced adversity of some sort).  The first of three in this series…

The fear…

Tonight I share a very short snippet of a woman interviewed under the 800 Young Women campaign ran by the NBCF.  It touches on the fear of cancer returning.  This is a fitting ‘lead in’ to what I will be talking about over the next few days…  I will touch on ‘The bad days’ (because I wasn’t always positive), and facing the fear of death.  Confronting mortality prior to old age is a serious haunt that affects every part of you and your loved ones. Bec x