Inspiring Stories

Jocelyn dedicates her Race Against Cancer (RAC) 2019 Run to every cancer patient. “Never give up because there is hope so long as you believe it!”

 

Jocelyn was a caregiver to her mother, who was diagnosed with early stage Cervical Cancer. Aside from her day job as a HR manager, she also cared for her mother who was fighting a battle with her illness.

 

In her case, the initial phase of the diagnosis was the most demanding part of the entire process as she had to provide a constant flow of positive energy to her mother who was struggling with negative thoughts. Fortunately for Jocelyn, her family believed in having a strong support system for her mother, and they supported her in every way they could – from sending her for treatments, to cooking healthier meals at home. Jocelyn’s mother fought the cancer bravely and has been in remission since the completion of her treatment.

 

Jocelyn’s main message to other caregivers is to maintain positivity; to find hope and have faith in the patient’s situation. Difficult as it may be, every cloud has a silver lining – we just need to see it!

 

 

Mr Martin Tay is a 70 year-old Prostate Cancer Survivor and a proud member of the Singapore Cancer Society (SCS) Walnut Warriors, a prostate cancer support group by SCS.

 

We had a chat with him recently and he was kind enough to share with us his story.

 

What started out as a urinary problem for Mr Tay turned out to be Stage 3 Prostate cancer. The doctors noted dangerously high levels of Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) in his blood, and recommended him to have hormone therapy to treat his cancer, but despite the risks involved, Mr Tay opted for surgery instead, in hopes of eradicating the cancer entirely. Fortunately for Mr Tay, the surgery was successful.

 

Among the many effects of his condition, one in particular had a major impact on his life – the urinary incontinence (involuntary leaking of urine) he experienced. This inconvenience left him depressed during the first year of the treatment as he found himself frequently needing to change his incontinence pads.

 

Fortunately, he was not alone on his road to recovery. Mr Tay was introduced to the Walnut Warriors Support Group during his rehabilitation at the SCS Rehabilitation Centre. The support group gave him the companionship and emotional support he needed the most at the lowest point of his life and he was drawn to the sense of comfort he felt from the group’s camaraderie. He explained to us, how the talks on the latest medical development on cancer hosted by SCS, sparked a hope in him which greatly alleviated the condition of his mental health during that trying period.

 

When asked about his advice to people diagnosed with cancer, Mr Tay’s eyes lit up as he told us with conviction: “there is nothing much to fear. Being diagnosed with cancer is tough, but not as difficult as everyone makes it out to be because people will outlive cancer.” He is a strong advocate of regular exercise and a healthy and balanced diet. Mr Tay's advice to all who have been diagnosed is, in short, to have an open mind and a positive outlook

This 28th July will mark Moy Hong’s 2nd time running at Race Against Cancer (RAC). His motivation for running is his late mother who lost her battle to colorectal cancer last year.

 

For Moy Hong, his mother's stage 4 cancer diagnosis was a major challenge as he was in his last year of university. He had to juggle between his studies and tending to her medical and emotional needs. It was tough but he kept going by reminding himself that his exhaustion could not compare to what she was going through. Moy Hong's message to other caregivers is to stay strong. “As their caregiver and loved ones, you’re the only source of hope.”

 

Having experienced cancer first hand, Moy Hong also advocates the importance of early screenings. He has personally undergone a colonoscopy to give himself peace of mind. “Cancer is more common than what we think, and it can occur to anyone. Had my mother found out about her diagnosis before the symptoms and complications appeared, she might have had a higher chance of survival."

 

 

Mr. Simon Tan is a Prostate Cancer Survivor who pioneered the SCS Walnut Warrior Support Group and member of the SCS Purple Dragon – Dragon Boat Team.

 

We had a chat with him recently and he was kind enough to share with us his story.

 

Consistent nagging back pains were Mr. Tan’s main symptom of prostate cancer, which prompted him to visit a General Practitioner. From there, he was referred to a Urologist who prescribed him some medication and sent him home. Initially, Mr Tan was relieved that the pains were not representative of a more severe illness. Unfortunately his doctor followed up with phone call to deliver the devastating and shocking news that he had been diagnosed with prostate cancer.

 

Mr. Tan underwent surgery to remove his prostate and subsequently isolated himself from close friends and family during the long recovery period. The surgery resulted in a loss of manhood for him and he found it tough to reconnect normally with people as a result.

 

Eventually, Mr. Tan started participating in more activities which allowed him to develop a positive mindset and aided him in his recovery. He gradually recovered from prostate cancer and has been cancer free from ever since. Following his recovery, Mr. Tan helped to set up the SCS Walnut Warriors Support Group in 2013, which is aimed at providing peer-to-peer support  for prostate cancer patients and survivors. Aside from his Walnut Warriors commitment, he is also active in teaching costume jewelry making classes and SCS Purple Dragon – Dragon Boat Team trainings. Mr. Tan will be participating in the DBS Marina Regatta 2019 together with the SCS Purple Dragon Team.

 

To Mr. Tan, “cancer is not a death sentence.” He emphasised the importance of having a positive mindset in life and for those newly diagnosed with cancer, to have hope. Psychological support is equally as important as the medical procedures to treat the illness and Race against Cancer provides individuals with the support for the patients through funding and the knowledge that they are not alone in their fight against cancer.

 

Have a story to share?

It is our belief that no one should fight cancer alone, and we are looking to collect stories from people who have been impacted by cancer, whether as a caregiver, patient, survivor, or family member. Share with us about yourself, and send us your story of how you have been personally impacted, your personal thoughts and experiences in this journey. Were there any quotes or people that inspired you?

 

We would love to hear your story which we can help to encourage others who are also in this journey.

 

Write in to us at rac@singaporecancersociety.org.sg

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