Right now, I am patiently (or maybe not so patiently) waiting for next week’s visit with my oncologist in Sudbury. You see, a week ago I had a follow-up CT scan at the North Bay Regional Health Centre to make sure my cancer hasn’t returned. The waiting is agonizing.
Thanks to your generosity I have my tests in North Bay, close to home. I only recently learned that it is our responsibility as a community to help the hospital fund advanced medical equipment to help our healthcare team care for us when we are sick. That’s why I am writing this letter.
I’ve been through this before. May 2015 I was diagnosed with prostate cancer. The care I received was incredible. The urgency and importance of early treatment was obvious by Dr. Goldfarb’s swift intervention. Two weeks later I was having surgery at the hospital and after that, I carried on with my life.
That all changed by October.
After a hunting trip with some of my buddies, my skin started turning orange. I’d lost a lot of weight and I was experiencing high fevers and passing out.
I had a CT scan and the doctor suspected I had pancreatic cancer.
Now, I don’t know how much you know about pancreatic cancer, it didn’t look good.
When I had surgery on December 3rd it turned out that my cancer was isolated to my bile duct. I didn’t have pancreatic cancer, and it was not related to my prostate cancer.
It’s funny to say I felt lucky when I was going through my cancer journey, but at the time, that’s how I honestly felt. My priorities changed.
That January I started six months of chemotherapy. I had 18 treatments in total and my last treatment was July 7, 2016.
Now I have CT scans every three months as part of my follow up care. I go through the same emotions every single time. The wait between your scan and the appointment with your doctor is always unbearable.
I don’t think I’ll ever stop thinking “what if” after having gone through cancer twice.
I know the reality is cancer can come back.
I am always hopeful my doctor will catch it early and I’ll beat it again. No matter what happens I know I can get the care I need at my hospital.
Because of my experience, I support my hospital with a monthly donation. Chances are, I will need my hospital again, we all will.
I hope you’ll join me today in making a donation to our hospital. Or better yet, consider joining me in making a monthly gift. You can help our hospital by clicking on the “Donate Now” button at the top of the page.
Our hospital needs the best medical equipment available to screen, detect and diagnose cancer early, as well as many other illnesses. I am proof of that! That means a state-of-the-art CT scanner, highly sensitive lab equipment and so much more.
If there is one thing I’ve learned with cancer it’s that time is of the essence. That was clear to me throughout my treatment. The referral to the next steps was always quick and seamless. Everyone involved in my treatment understood the importance of early diagnosis and treatment.
So, while I wait for my follow up appointment, I’m comforted knowing my monthly donation will help purchase state-of-the-art medical equipment that could save my life or someone else I know.