Moama resident Robyn Graham beat breast cancer in 2017. Receiving a clean bill of health meant she was able to go back to enjoying spending time with her family and ten grandchildren.
In January 2020 Robyn started experiencing overwhelming fatigue. She recalls visiting Funfields Waterpark with her daughter and grandkids and feeling so exhausted that she could barely even make it up the path to the front entrance. Just a few days later Robyn collapsed at a nail salon. She underwent a series of blood tests that revealed she had a blood cancer called acute myeloid leukaemia.
Robyn started having chemotherapy on the ward at St Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne in early February 2020 and has only been home for twelve days over the past 4 months....
My name is Katie, and I am a clinical nurse specialist at the Andrew Love Cancer Centre. I live In Ocean Grove with my husband and 3 boys. Life is busy but love life near the beach. I have worked at the centre for 16 years and I am a small part of a fantastic dedicated team. My role is to provide patients with not only their chemotherapy but ongoing support and education to patients and their families during this challenging and stressful time.
The best part of my job is getting to know patients and their families and share stories. You really become part of their lives and they do in ours. We support patients from diagnosis and treatment and help them work through side effects and uncertainties caused by their cancer. We are very lucky...
It was October 11, 2018...life was good, I was a week into being 32, I’d been nominated for top 6 beer reps in WA, I was planning my next big holiday and I was just so happy, I literally proclaimed on my birthday that this was going to be my year....finally!!!
And that’s when it happened, I found a lump while checking my handy work at applying a fake tan. Safe to say I got a little more than a summer glow from this tanning session. So, if someone ever says to you that a fake tan may save your life, it’s a thing!
I go to the GP that same day, I’m examined then get referred to go for an ultrasound, mammogram and biopsy. The next couple of days are awkward and painful. But then the waiting game for the results begins...which in some ways...
I’m a 32 year old Travel Agent and have lived in Geelong my whole life. I’m the youngest of 5 children (2 brothers and 2 sisters) and could not live without my legend of a mum! I’m currently living with mum, who has been my absolute rock throughout everything, running around after me with my appointments and treatment.
My 2 main passions in life are Dance and P!nk. I’ve been dancing for more than 20 years now and love everything about it. It’s such a great release and an escape from everything else going on in the world. I’ve performed most styles including jazz, contemporary, hip hop, Latin and commercial and taught all ages from 3 year olds through to 60 year olds.
In March this year I was diagnosed with Acute T-cell Lymphoblastic...
By going Dry this July, you’re helping the Royal Melbourne Hospital support people like Steve and Robyn.
With the COVID-19 pandemic, this year is even more significant than ever for our cancer patients.
For RMH cancer patient, Steve Mahoney, life has changed dramatically after he received his diagnosis in July 2019. After discovering a mouth ulcer, he went straight to the doctor. Steve considers himself a fighter, so the word ‘cancer’ did not frighten him. While both Steve and his wife of 12 years, Robyn were prepared for the battle, they admitted they did not know anything about head and neck cancer, or what lay ahead as they drove to the RMH from the Mornington Peninsula for treatment. Steve soon had to give up working in the panel beating business in preparation for the many months of surgery and treatment.
Steve’s cancer resulted in many...
Sometimes life throws you curve balls, the kind you never expected. Mine came in the form of a breast cancer diagnosis in 2019, it was just after my 30th birthday and I found a lump in Vietnam.
It can’t be cancer I assured myself, I’m far too young to get cancer. I was soon headed to Europe to start work in the busy summer tourist season ahead, but it wasn’t to be. On my return to London, I was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer. Not only was the lump cancerous but I had been told it had spread to my bones. I was told I had one chance and one chance only to fight this, I was also told I was going to die.
When I returned to Australia, I started all the medical treatments, but I knew that to beat cancer, medical treatments wouldn’t be...
Your Dry July fundraising helps Solaris provide Counselling and Support Services for people affected by cancer
Solaris Cancer Care recognises, people with cancer sometimes need support to manage the many issues that arise on the cancer journey.
Professional counselling and support groups are an integral service offered by Solaris Cancer Care and Dry July funding continues to underpin this vital assistance. Provided by compassionate, qualified facilitators, our counsellors and facilitators assist patients to talk through and clarify their concerns and issues, help find resolution and reduce anxiety.
Dry July funding has enabled us to continue the provision of our guest speaker program. These free events offer the opportunity to hear from experts in their field and enable patients and the wider public the opportunity to understand how to live well during the cancer journey.
The 2019 program included an Exercise Science Update presentation by leading academic, Professor Rob Newton. This presentation included cancer related fatigue and the influence of exercise; exercise medicine and tumour biology, reducing decline in strength, body composition and functional ability in cancer patients. This information is invaluable in managing and living with a cancer diagnosis.
2019 Dry July funds contributed to the introduction of drumming circle workshops at Solaris Cancer Care!
Solaris Cancer Care is fortunate to have counsellors trained in the Holyoake DRUMBEAT program and with the aid of Dry July, we purchased African Djembe drums and introduced drumming circle workshops. No musical skills or experience are required by participants.
As well as providing a sense of community, these structured programs incorporate music, psychology and neurobiology to build resilience through rhythm.