I went to a pre-treatment information session at the Cancer Society; there were 20 or 30 of us about to start chemo. Being able to ask questions eased my mind a bit.Kim
Giving back through better access to patient information
I was 49 and having my regular mammogram when I got the letter to ‘come back in for an appointment’.
I had cancer in my milk duct, which had spread to my lymph nodes.
I went to a pre-treatment information session at the Cancer Society; there were 20 or 30 of us about to start chemo. Being able to ask questions eased my mind a bit. I asked if I’d lose my hair and was told ‘With your chemo you will definitely lose your hair, and it will start on day 14.’
On day 14 exactly, my hair started to fall out. On day 15 I asked my husband to shave my hair because my scalp really hurt. As soon as I did it stopped hurting.
I was very sick during chemo, there were days I couldn’t get out of bed. They overdosed me every time; they just couldn’t get it right.
I had to eat soft food because of the ulcers in my mouth. And I lost all the feeling in the tips of my fingers. Even now, five years later, I’m not aware if I cut myself. I also have a bit of nausea still.
I have a few health problems still but I’m alive, I’m walking, I’m breathing.
By sheer luck I’ve ended up working on a project at health Alliance that will improve the way DHBs access patient information. This will provide safer medication prescription and administration, which could help a person like me. It’s good to have someone on the project who has been through it.
30 Stories for 30 Years
In 2020 the Cancer Society celebrated the 30th anniversary of Daffodil Day.
It also marked a 30 year relationship with ANZ as the Principal Sponsor of Daffodil Day. We want to thank the team at ANZ for their amazing support.
To acknowledge this we found 30+ people to tell their story. These stories talk about the generosity of everyday New Zealanders making a difference for people with cancer. They talk about the effect of cancer on people and on whānau, they talk about hope, and they talk about the work we do here at the Cancer Society.