I have been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, and it is clear that I will not live to see my 70th birthday.
But the diagnosis was not a shock.
I had always suspected it but had not been able to explain why.
I was in my late 20s and had just finished my first year of university, so it was hard to put my life back together.
In the last few months, however, I have felt much better and I have become a bit more confident in my health.
Although I do not yet have cancer itself, I do have the symptoms.
I have not been sleeping well, I struggle to concentrate, and I feel a bit less able to eat.
My main concerns now are getting on a diet and getting on medication for anxiety and depression.
As I speak to my GP about my chances of surviving, my symptoms seem to have gone away.
My GP says I have a “normal” cancer history and it seems like I am doing fine.
She says I could have had a more aggressive diagnosis in the past, but this time, she is more confident that I am not cancer-prone.
She tells me she has seen a lot of my patients at the hospital and is impressed by how well they are coping.
The outlook I have had is excellent, but I am concerned about the future.
The good news is that my condition has not been as aggressive as it was in the early stages.
But I am also worried about the health of my family.
My mum, my dad, and my two brothers are all still recovering from their cancers, and so are my three sisters.
They have not recovered fully, so my family is not completely at ease.
I want to get on a strict diet and exercise, and if I do get cancer, it is unlikely that I would survive.
My doctor told me that I could not be cured and said I should consider starting on anti-inflammatory medication and possibly taking a beta blocker to reduce the chance of relapse.
However, she also said that it was impossible to predict how long I would live.
I am very much at risk of relapse because I did not start my chemotherapy treatment until a few years after I had finished my university degree, so I am now more likely to relapse than not.
My life is going to be a lot harder in the future, but the hope is that I can get my life together and then I can be back to normal.
If I can do that, it would be a huge relief.
But if I am lucky, I could be in the position where I could still be living, and get back to work.
What are the symptoms of cancer?
Cancer is an aggressive, long-term disease that affects about half of all Australians.
It is usually found in the cervix and is spread by sharing fluids and tissues.
The most common cancers in Australia are melanoma, bowel and ovarian, breast, and prostate.
A diagnosis of pancreatic is often made on the basis of the presence of tumours in the pancreas or in the lumbar spine.
The treatment is usually a combination of chemotherapy and radiotherapy, which involves removing the tumours and treating the cancer with chemotherapy and radiation.
There are different types of chemotherapy.
In some cases, chemotherapy may be started before the tumour has spread and radiotherapies can be used to stop the spread of the cancer.
In others, it may be starting later, and the radiotherapy may be stopped after the tumouring has spread.
If you have a diagnosed cancer, you should talk to your GP about your treatment options.
What can you do to protect yourself from cancer?
If you are in the UK or elsewhere, you can protect yourself by staying home and eating a low-calorie, nutrient-dense diet.
You can also reduce your exposure to chemicals, such as lead and cadmium, by getting your hands dirty and washing your clothes.
Your doctor will probably recommend that you get an immunotherapy (IV) vaccination, which means you are exposed to a small number of immune-boosting antibodies from a doctor.
If this is done, your body will be able to protect you from cancer.
There is no cure for cancer, but it can be managed and slowed down.
In rare cases, such a treatment can help to slow down the progression of cancer.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) says that a cancer diagnosis can be made with a simple blood test and a standardised questionnaire.
However the test itself is not always accurate.
There may be a slight mismatch between the tests, which can cause confusion.
The NHS does not offer tests for cancer in England, and they are not offered in Wales.
If your symptoms are similar to those you might be suffering from cancer, contact your GP and your specialist, as this can be a sign that your symptoms might be linked to your disease.
If cancer is not your first reaction, then talk to someone who has experienced it.
If the symptoms do not resolve, or your GP says they do not