How Hana got her groove back
She was happily living her life as a radio presenter in Dubai, unaware that her life would take a huge twist very soon. A few months back, she felt something weird in her breast. She went to one hospital in Dubai and she was told (misdiagnosed) that she was okay. She was relieved and continued her life normally. Till she found out that her father had cancer. "My father got sick and he got cancer. I was travelling a lot to Jordan for that and my father passed away after fighting with cancer. After that I was having trouble breathing and the lump was getting bigger, so I felt that was not normal and I should visit a doctor again. When I went back again to the same hospital, they apologised and said that I have breast cancer. This happened six months after my father passed away. So I changed the hospital and re-did the test," Hana said while talking to City Times.
'I found the positive side of my cancer journey'
She started her treatment immediately. She did not tell her family that she had cancer but when she knew that she would have to take chemotherapy, she told them.
"My mother was here because we did not want to leave her alone after my father's funeral. I was worried that my mother will have to go through the same trauma once again. So at first, it was a big shock for my family and me. So I decided to be the strong one and tried to find the positive side of this journey. So I found out that cancer is not really that bad and it is only in our head. I started the chemotherapy and I made it like a fun journey. I started writing about it in my blog," said Hana.
I decided to focus on the fact that cancer patients' families suffer more than the patients themselves. I know that because I faced it with my dad. It is really hard for the family, so I decided to help my family, since they were dealing with cancer for the second time. Now, they are fine because they saw the positive side of it, it is not always drama.
Even at work, I was taking chemo and presenting my show and doing all the work. As an Arab, I know people wanted to hide it, as it will hamper my chance of getting married. Then, I started posting my picture without hair, even though I have a very nice wig. Everyone said they felt inspired by me. Many other cancer fighters told me that they felt miserable earlier but after seeing my happy pictures without hair, they felt happy.
I really don't know how I turned it around. I am known for being really stubborn. I don't like anyone to help me. Even when I started chemotherapy, I did not allow anyone to come and sit and help me at home or work. I don't know why, maybe I am weird. I always say that I do not have cancer and I am constantly telling my family that they have cancer and they are dealing with it. It's is only in their head. Cancer is just a bad cell in your body. And you have to take the medicine. The concept of dying is not a big deal for me because I think even death is part of the process of being in the universe, we will all die someday. So, I decided to live my life with cancer or without cancer. I am not the kind of depressive person who does not enjoy their life, in spite of having everything. We all have everything but we do not see the happiness in everyday life. Trust me, happiness remains, even when you have lost everything. When I opened myself to life and its beauty, things changed for me. At times even my family would forget that I had cancer, they would tell me, "Do you want to go out?" and I would say, 'In case, you forgot, I took chemo today.' Either you can make a big deal of it. Or just consider like you have flu or some high pressure. But you have to deal with it because sometimes people die from flu. Then I decided since I work in media I have to find a positive side in my journey. There is always a positive side you can find even in the worst time.
When my hair started falling, I thought I will feel very bad about it. My hair anyways wasn't the best. So I went to the hair salon and cut it. I made it really short and I slept for an hour. Then I found out that my pillow was covered with hair, so I went ahead and shaved. I was home alone and I showered and I felt, 'oh my God, guys are really lucky.' Because they can shower within five minutes. So, I was like 'I have a very nice wig and I can shower in five minutes'. I started sending those pictures to all my friends, saying they all should shave their head as well because it is so amazing.
I am on stage one. My last chemo was yesterday. It is my decision to remove both of my breasts and put implants. Some doctors told me that since I am young, there is a chance that cancer will come back again. So, I decided to go with this type of surgery. We still don't know if we will do the radiation; doctors will decide that after the surgery. I will continue taking targeted therapy. I have to take some hormonal medicines for five years.
Everyone is really inspired by me; they keep texting me all the time. They want to know the progress of my treatment. But I am not doing all that for me, I do not need any support but I am doing that for the people. I want to tell them that there is always hope. My sickness is treatable and I have a very high survival rate. Some people don't. Even if you have a problem at work or in a relationship, you can figure things out and find a way to be happy.
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