Breast cancer, Careers

Nine years after cancer – and why the time is now to follow your dreams

Today marks an incredible nine years since the day I was diagnosed with breast cancer and, naturally, I’m feeling reflective. I hate to give cancer the credit for anything positive, but it’s crazy to think about where I was then and where I am now.

On 22nd June 2012, I was 29 years old and at a bit of a crossroads in my career. For decades, I had wanted to be a “proper writer”. For years, I had been contemplating quitting my job in financial journalism, but I put it off because I loved the job, it was well-paid and it took me all over the world. Plus I had my whole life to pursue my dream career. Shortly after I found the lump and right before my diagnosis, I finally quit that job, moving across the world from Argentina to Dublin. I’d love to say I did it to follow my dreams, but the move was mostly motivated by a relationship.

Continue reading
Standard
Breast cancer, Cancer, Careers, UK, Women's Health

Seven years on – why it’s okay to quit

One of the phrases most commonly associated with cancer is ‘life’s too short’. Then there’s ‘live every day as if it’s your last,’ ‘appreciate the little things’ and ‘what would you do if you weren’t afraid?’ While I absolutely agree with all of the above, I think that anyone who is living with, or has had, cancer will tell you that in practice they aren’t always possible. Continue reading

Standard
Breast cancer, Breast Cancer Awareness, Cancer, Chemo Brain, Depression, Emotional Health, Guilt, Hair loss, Hair regrowth, Health, Manchester, MRI, Periods, Tamoxifen, UK, Women's Health

Six years on: tamoxifen, guilt and life after cancer

Today marks six years since I was diagnosed with breast cancer and I’m not quite sure how to sum up everything that’s happened in the last 24 hours, let alone the last year or six years. So here’s a list, in no particular order, of random thoughts and people who have inspired me. Continue reading

Standard
BCSM, Breast cancer, Cancer

Three years later, operation No. 2 is done

And so it was that almost three years to the day of my original surgery, I found myself going under the knife again. This time it was to remove a cyst that emerged after my original operation in June 2012 and recently got infected. So, no biggie. However, as with anything in the world of boobs, hospitals and health, it was not without its fair share of drama. Continue reading

Standard
Baldness, BCSM, Breast cancer, Cancer, Chemotherapy, Hair loss, Hair regrowth, Health, MRI, UK, Women's Health

Two years on and still nothing sinister

IMG_8329

So this photo popped up on my Facebook feed the other day.

There’s nothing like Facebook to give you that big surprise surge of emotions with a visual image – whether it’s a photo of your ex on his wedding day or a school photo of you with pudding-bowl hair circa 1990 that someone has recovered from their parents’ house. Or, in my case, a pic of you larking about in a photo booth mid-chemo with a completely bald head and some ill-informed eyebrow pencillage. Continue reading

Standard
Breast cancer, Cancer, Health, UK, Uncategorized, Women's Health

‘Happy Cancerversary’

20130620-221342.jpgHappy Cancerversary
to Me…
Happy Cancerversary
to Me…
Happy Cancerversary
Dear Lau-raaa…
Happy Cancerversary
to Me!

Hip-hip…

Ok, you may detect a hint of irony. I have long hated the word ‘Cancerversary.’ First of all, it doesn’t go particularly well with the word ‘happy,’ which should be reserved for things like holidays and families and birthdays and cake. ‘Cancerversary’ is up there with ‘Your cancer journey’ and ‘Your battle with cancer’ in my Most Disliked Cancer Terminology book, even though I’m guilty of using some of these myself. It’s also perhaps because I’m a grammar and spelling Nazi that I hate the adding of ‘-versary’ onto anything that isn’t ‘anni,’ but don’t get me started on that.

Hating aside, today is the anniversary of the day I was diagnosed with breast cancer. I would like to say it was the worst day of my life, but the truth is there were far worse days to come. A year ago today, I was the naive Laura who said things like “Ah, it’s just like breaking a leg” and “I’ll be running marathons again by the end of the year.” Pah! Little did I know what was ahead of me.

BUT…

I survived. And the fact is, I’m doing wonderfully. I haven’t quite got the ‘One-year all-clear’ yet because I’m still waiting for my mammogram and MRI scan, but the important thing is I feel healthier and happier than I did a year ago.

As proof, here is a photo of me looking suitably content on a beach in Ireland last week (yes, I did just say “content,” “beach” and “Ireland” in the same sentence – we were truly blessed with the weather.)

20130622-134705.jpg

And, while I may not have fulfilled my slightly farfetched hopes of running marathons by the end of 2012, I did manage to climb to the very top of this rather sizeable mountain in Ireland last week and am making significant progress training for the half marathon I’m going to attempt in October.

IMG_0553Considering there were times during chemo when I couldn’t stand on my feet long enough to even brush my teeth, I’d say I’ve come a pretty long way. So there!

Rejoicing aside though, I am very aware the ‘cancer journey’ (for want of a better phrase) doesn’t end here. Life goes on for me, but I’m well aware not everyone is so ‘lucky,’ which is why we’ve got to continue spreading the message and encouraging early detection. I’m very proud to have joined forces with Coppafeel!’s Boobettes and will be giving my first breast-cancer awareness talk to the boys and girls of Britain next month. (More on this later).

So… while I may not exactly love the phrase ‘Happy Cancerversary,’ I’m going to celebrate anyway, because I’m alive and well and that’s good enough for me!

Standard
Breast cancer, Cancer, Depression, Emotional Health, Guilt, Health, Ireland, UK, Women's Health

Coping With Cancer’s Ugly Sister: Guilt

IMG_5313I’m one of those people who feels guilty about everything.

Guilty for buying a new dress instead of giving money to the homeless guy; guilty for reading girlie glossy magazines instead of the newspaper; guilty about spending £2.40 on a coffee when I could make one at home for free. Guilty about having cancer.

To read the rest of this Huffington Post blog, please click the link below:

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/laura-price/coping-with-cancers-ugly-sister-guilt_b_2060752.html

Standard
Breast cancer, Cancer, Hair loss, Hair regrowth, Health, Humor, Humour, UK, Uncategorized, Wigs, Women's Health

The One Where I’m Told I Look Like Chicharito

Shit my Dad says

Dad: “Your hair’s getting blacker and thicker every day. You know who you look like?”

Me: “Who?”

Dad: “That little Mexican bloke who plays for Manchester Utd. You know, Chick-a-rito [sic].”

Huh. So I do!

IMG_5794IMG_5795

Standard