Kate G
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Diary of a “Fake” Cancer Patient – Getting a Grip

Kate G
Posted by
15 May 2014

It’s not been the best of weeks – I’ve been feeling rough for a few weeks now & I finally “gave in” to it at the weekend which culminated in a visit to the Dr & a few days off work. My symptoms are exactly the same as other friends & colleagues – sore throat, swollen glands, a feeling that something is “lodged” in my throat, fatigue & general malaise but in my head & following some surreptitious googling, I have self-diagnosed throat cancer. “Ridiculous!” family & friends have said or “Don’t be bloody stupid!” but you have to understand that a cancer patient will always assume the worst. It’s a great relief that the antibiotics have started working so hopefully that means that it is just a throat or chest infection & the best thing that I can do is to get myself back to work as soon as possible! Gives me less time to think (or google ...)

In my last blog I talked about the psychological challenges facing patients on watch & wait or in remission, & the irony is that I saw my psychologist on Monday – so imagine how someone would feel, in this situation, if they don’t have the help that I do????

You see, this is the hidden price of watch & wait – nothing is ever “just” a throat infection or a cold & if you dwell on things like me it becomes incredibly difficult to maintain a true sense of equilibrium. With the best will in the world, this is something that can only ever be truly understood by a fellow patient or put into perspective by a clinical professional.

I’d like to say that I’m ok with all this but in all honestly I’m probably not & it really doesn’t help that I’m only 2 weeks away from my next check. While we’re on that subject, it’s not brilliant for a cancer patient if they extend the time between your checks because to be honest it gives you more time to worry !! In my situation I will never be discharged because my cancer cannot be eradicated (unless they invent some new wonder drug) but I have considered how I would feel in that situation & in truth, I think that I would probably find it terrifying, rather like being set adrift without a life jacket ...

Once I’m back into my normal daily routine I imagine that I will start to feel better but too much time to think does not a happy Kate make ........



Only just read your blog for the 1st time today Kate and I just like to tell you about my mum. She was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkinson Lymphoma back in the mid seventies when I was 12/13, hers has never been "cured" but now 40 years later and in her mid-seventies she's certainly given it a good run. Stay positive, she always has and it's kept her going :-)


Another great blog, Kate.

Sorry to hear that you've not been well but good to hear that you're on the mend now and that it wasn't anything more untoward. Totally understand where you're coming from regarding thinking the worst. I found it particularly difficult when I first came out of hospital and the safety blanket of being looked after day and night was taken away. Every little cold I feared was something worse but 10 years on I feel a lot more relaxed about things.

Ellie Dawes

Sorry to hear you've been feeling rubbish Kate. It must be really tough but it sounds like your friends are right, try to stop googling symptoms and scaring yourself! :) 

Really hope you're feeling better soon and can get out and enjoy the sunshine.