It was one year today that I was sat in a blue and yellow 'quiet room' in Bath RUH as a doctor told me the earth shattering news that I had Malignant Melanoma, a form of Skin Cancer which I later learned currently has no cure; following that news began the biggest challenge I could ever imagine, to go and fight it.
Now one year on I'm sat thinking back to that room, the doctors and the phone call to Mark and my family after my diagnosis and subsequently what can only be described as the following days of hell waiting to find out my prognosis, how far the Cancer might have spread, where it could have spread to and if my life was about to be cut very, very short.
Needless to say I am a mixed bag of emotions, happy but sad, proud but also scared. Elated that I have come so far just about numbs the feeling of wanting to scream really loud; deep down I still feel angry that I ever had to face this situation, at times I don't think its truely hit home, but still, I am eternally grateful to have come out the other side of it. I might not be as confident or as carefree as I used to be, but I am here and I feel strong.
I am high risk for reoccurrence, so while I have won the battle so far, I still have a long road ahead of me. I also have two more months of trial treatment and then the adjustment to life without the drug thereafter.
While the last year has been tough, I am greatful for a handful of precious things that Cancer has given me. Strength, love and appreciation for what I have. Safe to say the person I was before my diagnosis and the person I am now might not recognise each other, but I wouldn't change that for anything. Cancer may have caused me, my family and close friends pain and immense upset as it shocked us into despair but it hasn't taken our determination and my desire to really live and to live happily, if anything it's actually made it stronger.
So here's to you Cancer, you had your moment, you've made your point but I think it's fair to say you've had your time. I have slowly come to terms with the fact that it will always be a part of me and the emotional effects will never be forgotten but I'm taking that as a good thing as I know now not to take anything for granted, ever.
Thank you to everyone who has helped me get through this last year, without you I couldn't have smiled through it like I have.
I'm off for a drink to celebrate :)