Skip to main content

The Unseen Struggles of Survivorship

It's a strange feeling when you become the person who others turn to for advice and support, especially when it comes to dealing with a disease. In my case, it was cancer. Suddenly, I found myself being seen as the expert, the go-to source for information on treatments, surgeons, and mammograms. People reached out to me, strangers seeking guidance, as if I held all the answers.

But what they don't realize is that every time someone brings up my experience, it reopens a wound that I thought had healed. It's like a constant reminder of the battle I fought and the pain I endured. It's not that I don't want to help or share my story, but sometimes, it can be incredibly traumatizing.

The truth is, many of these people who now seek my advice weren't there for me when I needed support the most. They didn't witness the sleepless nights, the fear, and the uncertainty that consumed my life during my cancer journey. Yet, because of my advocacy and my belief that everyone, especially black and brown individuals, should have access to preventative healthcare, I continue to lend a helping hand.

Survivorship, however, is a road less understood. It's a path that is often overlooked, overshadowed by the focus on the initial diagnosis and treatment. But for me, it has been the hardest part of my journey. I can't speak for others, but I can speak for myself, and I want to shed light on the struggles that come with survivorship.

The constant reminders, the questions, the expectations to be the pillar of strength for others - it can be overwhelming. It's as if I'm expected to have all the answers, to be the encyclopedia of cancer knowledge. But the truth is, I'm still learning and navigating my own emotions and healing process.

Sharing my story is both empowering and draining. It's a reminder of the battles I fought and the scars I carry, both physically and emotionally. It's a reminder that survivorship is not just about physical healing, but also about finding a way to reconcile with the trauma and the fear that lingers within.

So, to those who reach out seeking guidance, please understand that while I am here to help, it's important to recognize the weight of the stories we survivors carry. It's crucial to approach us with empathy and sensitivity, knowing that every conversation can reopen old wounds.

Survivorship is a journey unique to each individual. It's a road filled with triumphs and setbacks, with moments of strength and vulnerability. And while I can't speak for others, I will continue to share my experience, to advocate for better healthcare access, and to shed light on the unseen struggles of survivorship.

Because, in the end, it's not just about surviving. It's about finding a way to thrive, to heal, and to support one another through the ups and downs of life after a life-altering diagnosis.

So, let's continue to raise awareness, to support one another, and to acknowledge the complexities of survivorship. Together, we can make a difference and ensure that no one feels alone on this challenging road.

This is my story, my experience, and I will never stop speaking my truth. Raw , Real and some times unfiltered ! 


Popular posts from this blog

before cancer.....

Before my breast cancer diagnosis, I was incredibly shallow. I was obsessed with my appearance and always striving to live up to the model image I had created for myself. I even dreamed of posing for Playboy one day. But after a double mastectomy, I am now so self-conscious that I can hardly recognize myself. It took me almost a month to look down at my chest after the surgery. I cried and cried for hours in the bathroom, wondering how this could be happening to me. I had always been so confident in my body, and now I felt like a stranger in my own skin. As a mother, I struggled with how to teach my daughter to be confident when I was struggling so much myself. How could I tell her to love herself when I didn't even recognize myself anymore? I was grateful for my surgeon's skilled hands and for getting the cancer out, but I hated the results. When people say that a mastectomy is not a boob job, they are right. The scars and the fact that I will never have sensation again at 34

Camp Breastie 2023