4
February
#WorldCancerDay
#WeCanICan

Karen, Australia

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Mid 2010 I had a sore throat, it went away. It came back. It went away, It came back and three GPs thought I had a virus, or recurring tonsilitis. I started having pain when I swallowed food and began eating a lot of Vindaloo...no rice... just to have a sense of relief as it felt like a good burn as I swallowed.

The next GP still wasn't sure but I managed to get into the specialist on a fluke cancellation in early 2011. He knew as soon as I opened my mouth. I had stage 4 cancer...on my tonsil.

Within five weeks, I had a biospy, PEG, radiation mask made and dental molds...and my first lots of radiation and chemo. 

2011 was hard. The cancer was advanced and had spread to both lymph nodes. The treatment was agressive. I couldn't eat for about eight months and was fed through a tube. In fact, I could barely open my mouth and for a time, I wasn't able to speak and I could barely walk. I got every side effect and a few other things went wrong (think superbug). But I survived.

I am officially cured and though I still have some side effects, I am living and sharing a great life with my family.