CANSA Relay For Life

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Marlene Jordaan: GHOH (Caregiver) – Cancer never sleeps therefore we Relay

Cancer touched my life and so began my journey of solitude, fear of the unknown and the battle for my Faith. In 2014 my husband phoned me and said that his personal banker has cancer. I was shocked did not know how to respond. I phoned her but was scared to talk to her not knowing how she will react. I continuously followed up to find out how she was doing, and over time we became friends. I often thought to myself, I have no idea how she remains so positive, always feeling well and never complaining.

When my husband was diagnosed in 2017, we decided we cannot tackle this journey with a negative mindset, we should be positive. I remembered how positive Elza-Marie was over the years and knew I had to stay positive. I will admit it is not always easy, there are days that you feel you can sit in a corner and just cry your heart out. When this happens, I remind myself we said positive, this is not an easy journey and it is not a death sentence, we will survive. The thing is you should never rely on your timing of survival but should trust in God’s timing as he knows when healing will be, it might never happen, but some people do survive, and we should remember the blessing we have to enjoy every day as it is your last day!

I joined Elza-Marie as a volunteer and a fellow CANSA Relayer in 2017. Together we decided to do fund raising for Relay For Life. We started a fund raiser event called Crochet for CANSA in 2017.

To other Caregivers, I know it is not easy, you sometimes feel that you are lost, that you are the one to shoulder the battle and not the Survivor. You have days you feel alone and not sure how to support your “Survivor” whether it is a friend, a family member or partner. Talk to other people, whether it is a friend or other caregivers and encourage each other. I found my first Relay to make the difference as it is only when you Relay that you understand the meaning and that there are others with the same battle. You realise there is friendship and support in this community.

Doing the Relay For Life might feel like a sacrifice, you start the relay not thinking about the impact, however as the night progress’s you realise your sacrifice becomes meaningful. It means something to be part of a group that supports everyone who battles with cancer. It creates a sense of belonging and purpose to be part of the Relay and get more people involved and creating HOPE. This HOPE makes sure you are not feeling alone and supports you, especially when the sun rises, and you realise you are blessed with yet another day! The Relay assures me that together we provide support for the day of tomorrow and knowing that you might be the light, the HOPE for someone else. It is more fulfilling than any sacrifice. Cancer never sleeps therefore we Relay; May we all win our battles no matter what it takes!

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