My name is Oluwaseun Olanrewaju Johnson. I am a soft skills trainer, a part time lecturer, a realtor and the owner of Beauty by Julie. And yes, I am a breast cancer survivor! I have gone through all the dreaded typical cancer treatment plans like Chemotherapy, Radiotherapy, Surgery and other life style changes required to stay healthy.
My reason for coming out is to demystify the myth about cancer & to change the narrative. These are some of the myths about cancer and proofs that dispel them.
- Cancer Means the End of the World-(MYTH): Many people believe there is no life after cancer diagnosis. This is far from being true. I started my skin care products and other laudable achievements after my treatment.
- Cancer affects Just the Old-(MYTH): Cancer can affect anyone in any age group. I was diagnosed at 34! I met people younger than myself during treatment too.
- Cancer is Hereditary-(MYTH): This is not particularly true as there was no history in my family before me!
- Breast Cancer Affects Just Women-(MYTH): This is totally misguided. Men also have breast cancer, though this condition is very rare. Recently, Michael Knowles, the father of the popular R&B musician, Beyonce, was diagnosed with breast cancer.
Cancer can be devastating for the patient, family & friends as it requires a lot of funds, moral & emotional support. The best time to treat it is at the early stage when it has not spread to other parts of the body. The reason most people do not survive is because they tried to cure it with alternative means without proper medical advice or exploring the medical way. They present their cases when it is advanced and all other treatments have failed! I almost fell victim of this as I tried an alternative therapy, using high dose of vitamin C, drinking lemon, soursop leaf, stopped sugar and all sorts of supplements. By the way, these other alternative treatments are not cheap as I spent close to N800,000.00 before realizing I was endangering my life. I had to ask the Doctor to connect me with those he has treated before and are survivors but he could not specifically give a name.
We could complicate issues by replacing medical help with just prayers & fasting. This could be very detrimental as I was told by some clergy that it was an arrow and only fervent prayers, fasting & deliverance could help. Another told me that I should not go for the surgery as he sees death afterwards. We need to sieve what we listen to as they can either help or discourage us. The place of medicine can never be replaced with prayer and fasting; there is no reason they cannot work hand in hand to give a better outcome.
Reasons why people run from the medical treatment available.
For some women, the physical loss of their breasts can serve as a daily reminder and trauma that could lead to low self-esteem.
The trauma of chemotherapy and all its side effects.
Medical bills & fear of future reoccurrence.
My advice to women is that they need to be familiar with their bodies. Do a monthly check for lumps and any funny feeling, preferably after your period. If you find anything please seek medical advice immediately as delay may be fatal. If you have been diagnosed, please follow medical advice, that is the only proven solution at the moment and please ask for help from any means available. Do not be quiet as you may not be able to sort all the medical bills on your own. I urge other survivors too to speak up as this would encourage others going through same ordeal and give them hope.