Life After Cancer: Living Two Lives

When cancer comes into your life, it can have a massive impact on many of the aspects of your life. It can often feel as though your life has been completely flipped upside down, chewed up and spat out!. During the treatment phase, there are usually some big changes depending on whether you have to move closer to the hospital, appearance changes, relationship changes, changes to your lifestyle including health, fitness and eating habits. The treatment stage can last for months and for some even years. When thinking back to my time during treatment it feels like a blur.



When I look at my life before I was diagnosed with cancer my life looked significantly different. I was so energetic, participating in many types of sport nearly every day of the week. I didn’t have a care in the world and I was just taking life for granted, however, I was just a kid. Life after cancer I see myself as similar but I have to take precautions that I had never even thought of before and my priorities in life have changed majorly.


I have had this feeling for a few years now, although I couldn’t put how I was feeling into words until recently. I realised what I am feeling is like I have experienced two different lives, one that took place before cancer, and the one post-treatment.


This feeling is completely normal. Life will be different post-treatment no matter what cancer you had, what treatment you had or how severe the cancer was. Things that might look different in your life include:

daily routines

appearance

energy levels

mindset

relationships

priorities

ongoing medical appointments and check-ups with doctors

career

financially


It is important to remind yourself how much your body has been through. You may be dealing with many side effects of treatment for some time You have come out the other side and although you may be different, you are stronger than ever before! You are not defined by your cancer and what it has left you with.


One of the best things about humans is we can adjust so well! It may take some time but you can live your life how you want. Take things slowly, adjust your life when you need and surround yourself with supportive and loving friends and family. You are never alone in your journey and many of us have been where you are today, do not be afraid to reach out for help.



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