Breast Cancer and me.

Tits Upon Tyne is no longer something solely focused on Breast Cancer but the cause is the entire reason I started this campaign. Over time it has grown into something more and looks at other female issues – especially in the music industry, but I think now is a great time to go back and look at the message Tits Upon Tyne originally set out to make. Support and community is vital and hopefully we are here as a platform to be there for as many tits in Newcastle Upon Tyne that may be struggling.

It’s not often your world can be turned upside down. Thankfully, me as an author of this piece I can say that I have never had to suffer at the hands of cancer directly. However, the impact of a loved one’s diagnosis can be crippling mentally as you try and cope with the news of someone you love being victimised by something you don’t even see. You can’t visualise the pain and the ambush is invisible. It is hard to even comprehend most of the time. I guess my story is that I didn’t cope to an extent. I let my mum’s condition keep me awake with worry and eat away at any sense of reason I had been able to hold onto up until that point in 2018.

The one main thing I had learnt from my mum’s journey is that checking yourself is so vitally important. If it wasn’t for the routine check up where they found the minuscule lump, my mother’s cancer would have gone undiscovered. With 1 in 7 women at risk, I was gobsmacked to hear from Breast Cancer Now that in 2018, only 48% (LESS THAN HALF!) of women interviewed said they checked themselves regularly.

A year later I can proudly say my mum is in remission and things are looking good. But really, Breast Cancer doesn’t go away. The consequences of treatment mean lymphadima can attack my mother at any moment from simply having a bath or overworking the arm in which the operation took place. I do understand I am incredibly lucky and my mother is one amazing, strong and empowering woman but other peoples’ journey with breast cancer can end so tragically different.

EDIT = Breast cancer still continues even during the Corona Virus pandemic. Clapping for the NHS every Thursday at 8pm has made me fully appreciate and realise how important our National Health Service is all year round. However, those suffering from breast cancer as of now are having it harder than ever. To donate to Breast Cancer Now please click here. The advice given to those suffering with cancer during the pandemic are as follows:

  • Stay at home
  • Only go outside for food, health reasons or work (where this absolutely cannot be done from home)
  • Stay two metres (six feet) away from other people
  • Wash your hands as soon as you get home

Essential and urgent cancer diagnosis, treatment and care will continue. NHS staff are working hard to make sure cancer treatments can continue in the safest and best possible way. To do this during the pandemic, there may need to be some changes to how treatments are delivered.

  • Cancer treatments, especially operations and chemotherapy, are riskier now than before. Cancer and its treatment can weaken the immune system, making a person more vulnerable to the virus.  
  • In some cases, it may be safer to delay cancer treatment or give it in a different way, to reduce the risk from coronavirus.  
  • Any decisions about surgery and other treatments will be based on how urgent it is and the level of risk. Your safety is a priority in making any decisions. 

FOR MORE CANCER SPECIFIC FAQ’S IN RELATION TO CORONA VIRUS, PLEASE CLICK ME!

Remember you are not alone and help is always available to you if you need it.

To spread awareness and cement some scary facts into your mind, I have created this infographic – hopefully it demonstrates how important it is for you to #CheckYourself.

Natalie Greener x

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