The evolving COVID-19 situation has impacted all of us. For people affected by cancer, the pandemic has been particularly challenging.
We asked our community to share how COVID-19 has impacted them.
This is Vicki’s story of how she has been forced to self-isolate during her breast cancer treatment.
I was diagnosed with breast cancer in October last year. They found the cancer during my two-yearly mammogram. I went through a whole lot of tests, and they found that the tumour was too big to do things the usual way – I had to have all the chemotherapy first, and then yesterday I had a mastectomy.
Breast cancer is hard enough. I’d already endured six months of chemotherapy, and I could really see the light at the end of the tunnel after this mastectomy.
Then COVID-19 came and that changed.
I can’t go anywhere, and now I’m only allowed one visitor for one hour a day while I’m in hospital.
My daughter couldn’t even wait with me before I had my surgery. That was the hardest thing.
My son works away and usually comes home for weekends. Because he works in another town, my oncologist said it just wasn’t worth the risk, so now I can’t see him.
I go for little walks near my house and do that to get out of the house, but other than that I haven’t left the house for weeks since COVID-19 started.
I’m a primary school teacher, but I haven’t taught since October last year.Because I’ve only just finished chemotherapy, my immune system is compromised. I won’t be going anywhere until this crisis is over and it’s safe.
Thank you for sharing your story with us, Vicki.
We understand those undergoing cancer treatment, cancer survivors and their families and friends may have questions in relation to COVID-19.
If you are feeling anxious, have questions or need support, Cancer Council’s information and support line is available on 13 11 20 during business hours. Our specially trained team can provide emotional support as well as practical tips for minimising the risk of infection during this time.