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I'm Cathy Pritchard and I live in Dumfries with my husband. I was a district nurse and
I worked at Dumfries Infirmary. I was diagnosed in 2007 with ovarian cancer.
The operation itself was fine I got through that no bother. The chemo was just horrendous.
They give you a list of symptoms you could get and I got every one of them to a bad degree.
It always seemed to be something else and the cancer came back so I've just recently
had more treatment. You know when the last treatment is going to be and you have it marked
on the calendar and you work towards that, but when you get to that last treatment, you
realise that you're on your own, there isn't much else to help you.
I'm the type of person that deals with things by myself, I've never been the type that could
actually speak to family about things, I think mainly because you think you'll worry them
if you tell them all the symptoms so it has been a lonely time.
I found that there was a drop in that you could go in any time and see someone.
There's often a time after treatment that patients feel abandoned, that's a word that's
been used before or forgotten about or just lonely too. Having the centre here where they
know they can drop in and there's somebody and somewhere where they can come to for support.
I was always popping down to see them when I was ill, and you knew you would get a cup
of coffee, that was nice. It was even the advice and that from Claire meant a great
deal knowing that somebody was there and helped me work through my problems shall I say, or
cope with the problems I had. It's just a lovely feeling you can speak to
the Macmillan nurses or helpers here. there's no inhibitions, you can come in here and tell
them how you're really feeling which is often very low. I've had a few times in here in
this wee room in tears and that but you always leave feeling a bit better. She came at the
right time I will admit. Her whole demeanor is calmness which I think is good because
often you are in a turmoil yourself and just having someone there, just to listen, she
does it very well, I must admit I think she does it beautifully.