More From JJ
I’m J.J., 41 years old, diagnosed at 35. I was born in St. Catharines, Ontario, but been a Toronto girl since 1990. I’m the Director of IT at John St. Advertising in Toronto.
My Experience with Melanoma
My first encounter was my own. It’s totally changed me. I am THANKFUL for everything. I don’t beat around the bush, I get to the point. Sometimes this is good, sometimes it is bad – i.e. when someone asks, “How do I look in this dress?”….well, the answer is honest….. 😛
I spend my time with the people who count and I spend it wisely. My bucket list gets longer by the day, but now I get things DONE. Before being sick, things would slide past….
Since the Diagnosis
I’m surprised how this experience did and didn’t affect my life. People say “J.J. You are an inspiration and such a trooper”…..but to be honest, when you’re given a task at hand – do interferon to LIVE – you just do it! It really did blend into my life and I tried to continue with a normal life during my treatment. I don’t have any “superpowers”….I just wanted to live. Simple.
Advice I’d Give
The treatment SUCKS but just DO IT. It gives you the possibility of being cancer-free anywhere from the first 5 years after treatment to a lifetime. Sounds like a pretty good deal to me. Going thru the entire experience as a patient or caregiver is truly life changing. In some ways, I am glad that I got sick…..it really gave me a better outlook on time.
I would like to thank EVERYONE at Princess Margaret Hospital…especially Dr Quirt (for putting up with my craziness), Dr. Hogg, Nancy and Susan (my lovely nurses), Cora (for keeping me on track), Dr. Nadini Sathi (for always being there), my bestest friend Jill (my sister, who put up with my crazy phone calls at all hours), my parents (who love me), John St. (who let me continue to work, even tho I did have a few naps at my desk), and Porkenstein (my dog, she never left my side).
The only other message I have is…..when you are planning your day, getting dressed, putting on your pants and shirt, put on sunscreen too……and a hat is never a bad idea either.