February 4th 2021 - World Cancer Day
A topic which to be honest, unfortunately, most people can nowadays say that they have been touched by in one way or another.
For me, having been on the receiving end of a Doctor saying "you have cancer", I know how it feels all too well.
This year will actually mark 10years since I got that news, and alots happened since then.
But that moment in time, that day, that week that followed with tests, scans and surgery will forever be the most frightening thing I've ever gone through.
I've absolutely no shame in saying that I sat there at 20yrs of age and cried with fear.
I absolutely balled as I sat there and consulted Dr.Google for mortality rates whilst shrouded by this dark cloud and feeling that it was over.
That at 20years old I was finished.
That that was that.
I had a very sudden realisation of my mortality, when as a relatively fit and happy go lucky 20yr old I had previously felt so indestructible
And whilst I made myself a promise when I got sick to speak out on the topic, and to do all I could to raise awareness even if only to one person, that could be one person saved or helped.
I do however know that to some cancer is a topic that they would rather not think about, whether because it dredges up bad memories or reminds them of hard times, or just reminds them that someone they care about is currently sick.
If you're one of those people I'm sorry 🙌
I however was massively fortunate.
I had "the best kind of cancer" 🥜
I caught it early.
Surgery and a couple of years of surveillance and monitoring were enough.
I know that many others are not as fortunate, and I've seen first hand the effects this can have on families, on friends, on kids and partners.
Words could simply never do justice to just how horrible it is.
But talking about it, cancer and my experience with it, and raising a little awareness can sometimes go a very long way.
As someone who's been through it you never know what you may say or point out that may resonate with someone and with which they'll act on if somethings just not right.
It could help spark up that inkling that means they'll get something checked up.
That's exactly why I do this.
Personally, I reckon that deep down I knew that Testicular Cancer was a possibility, that night I rambled into A&E after work with groin pain.
From years and years of absolute engrossing myself in any and all sports, I knew all about Lance Armstrong (the now somewhat disgraced cyclist, not the Astronaut folks).
He brought Testicular Cancer to the fore.
I reckon that maybe I did know it was a possibility and maybe that's why I acted.
Having been told by a Doctor that I may not have made my 21st birthday (which was less than 6months away) had I not acted when I did, I'm just glad that I did.
Whatever rationing I stick to going to A&E.
I've said it several times since that I do genuinely wish that the general population could experience the world, the daily goings on and issues, through the eyes and with the mindset of someone who's been told they have cancer, without ever having to experience that God awful feeling.
Suddenly your perspectives change.
Suddenly "problems" aren't all that big.
Suddenly you realise what's really important.
So please, do yourself some favours and be aware of cancer, for yourself.
Go for your tests.
And if you think somethings just not right please go see a Doctor.
You can feel stupid about going later on if it's nothing!
But if it's something, and hopefully it never is, the opportunity to catch it early may not come twice.
Finally, and most wholeheartedly - Fuck Cancer 🖕