Wednesday, 24 July 2013

How do Cancer Patients Move?

Hey Everyone,

So it has been awhile since I made a post and I want to apologize for that. Things have been pretty busy lately as I have been working hard at finding a new job and moving forward with my career. It has basically dominated my time, but I am finding this morning that I finally have a normal day to day time frame coming together. Always good!

It is a weird spot to be in these days. I am looking at potentially moving from Vancouver and I find it puts me in another unexpected thought process. What do cancer patients do when they have to, or choose to move? It is not a simple process at all. 

I really appreciate the support and the care I have received at the BC Cancer Agency. I credit them with me still being here today. This is not to say that there is not great and amazing care out there in other places, I simply am not familiar with it. It is further complicated by the level of trust patients build up with their medical/oncological team. I trust my doctors with my life. This is not a small bond, and certainly something that is not trivial. We went to war together. They saw me at my worst, they advised me, they gave me the support I needed and they gave their all to help me. Now I am faced with the concerns of not having them there. 

You build personal relationships with your oncologist. When you see them as much as a cancer patient does, it is unavoidable. I am not saying I would ever go out for coffee with my oncologist, or that I even address them by their first name. But they know me. They know who I am. And most importantly, they know what I went through. They know my case.

It is a concern of mine that when I move, I will not have those personal relationships. It will take awhile for a new doctor to learn my case, and learn me (my file is quite large after all!). I also just don't want to get dumped on someone. My oncologist handles my every concern (she is my hero! I don't know how she does it for so many people, and she isn't the only one who does this!) Will I still be as important? Will the resources be there? Will I be able to drive down the street and get an X-ray if I need to? Among other concerns, the list grows and grows. I am sure it will all work out. But yet again, another unexpected thought process in my life thanks to what I went through.

I certainly love to travel. I love to live new places and experience new things. Unfortunately, Cancer patients and Survivors have a few extra concerns with it.


  1. I can relate to this - I always think, 'but if I move, I'll need to set up with another health group again' which is a bit of a process.

    Two things that can help: First, search for a oncologist in your new city and then email them directly requesting they take you on. You can learn a little bit about people's temperament and experience if you do a quick google search :)I think this is better than being 'dumped' on someone, for sure.

    Second, be sure to get a copy of all your results, including a disc with the imaging. When I left the UK and came back home to Canada, this disc was a lifesaver down the road.

    Good luck with your decisions and job hunt! ~Catherine

    1. Hey Catherine,

      Thanks for the comment, it is really helpful as this is a topic I have zero experience with and am filled with questions. Great ideas and things for sure I will be looking into! You are full of good advice and I really appreciate it!

      Take care of yourself,