Over on our Instagram, @cancerwellmag, we asked cW readers a question: What is the first thing you did when you were declared cancer-free? Read on for their responses.
“After my last round of chemo, I went to Bermuda before getting my post-scan.
It wasn’t clear, but after six months of chemo, I had to celebrate getting through it! The plus side was getting away from Chicago winter for a week.” — Joanne Ulanday, stage IVB Hodgkin’s lymphoma (@joanneee.u)
“I celebrate every day as best I can. When I heard I was in remission for the second time, I did nothing but eat ice cream.” — Camesha Richardson, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (@faithdrippinoncancer)
“I let out a huge wail!” — Tamron Little, mesothelioma (@tamronlittle)
“My husband and I went on a weekend getaway right before the Christmas holidays to celebrate! We drank wine, slept, shopped, got massages, ate fine food and simply celebrated each other… Going forward, I simply want to live every moment being grateful.” — Marti Phillips Pack, multiple myeloma (@mmpack)
“I wear a new pair of socks to each of my appointments; it’s what has gotten me through. I wear socks with encouraging messages or fun designs. I’m nowhere near the end of my treatment, but it’d be so great to add a pair to my collection that said ‘cancer-free!’” — Araceli Lopez, breast cancer (@cancertines)
“I will likely never get to [be] cancer-free, so I live every moment of every day and I never say ‘I’ll do that next year.’ Be present, live fully, love hard!” — Shannon Snow DAcquisto, breast and brain cancer (@ssdacquisto)
“I won’t hear those words for at least four years, so I plan on living my life now to the fullest! I want to plan a trip to Europe and go to a meditation retreat. I am grateful and thankful every day and have learned so many lessons on this journey.” — Tammy Bertucci, leukemia (@tammybertucci)
“I’m not sure my medical team will ever use [‘cancer-free’] because they can’t guarantee that the cancer won’t come back; they say “no evidence of disease” at this time. I’m very grateful for that and my response is to say ‘yes’ to every opportunity that comes my way.” — Sandra Cameron (@s.l.c.ameron)
“Since I was told I had breast cancer at 28, I paused dance and remained focused on getting well for the next 10 months. During those awful months, the one thing I told myself was I would get back to dance because it’s always been my happy place…After completing radiation, I returned two months later and joined a dance team. Was it hard? Of course, but I pushed through because dance always brought me joy and fulfillment.” — Rosalina Felipe, breast cancer (@itsrosa.lina)