I greatly admire the work Blood cancer UK and other charities are doing to raise awareness of our predicament on a Govt level but it occurred to me I am letting myself off the hook too easily and I can perhaps make a difference at a micro level as I have many family /friends /colleagues on my email list and so I have sent out an email to them all explaining about Blood cancer and the lack of protection the vaccine affords some of us and asking them to continue to wear masks and social distance on public transport and in essential shops for the sake of vulnerable people. I am not ashamed of either having blood cancer or asking for help what do you think? Many responses so far have been surprised as they thought the Govt had said everyone is protected so it is really about awareness raising.
Good on you… I’m not ashamed of having blood cancer either but I’m diagnosis is a secret meaning I’m having to be super aware of the people and place I surround myself … if anything it’s keeping annoying people and things I don’t want to do at bay…
Went to a supermarket today and though their were customers and staff not wearing masks (though obvs some maybe exempt) I just keep a social distance and shopped quicker round em.
I know their is a big argument about masks but for me… It’s a visual reminder it’s out there still… I wear my mask as a reminder to wash my hands, sanitise and keep distance …
Went to the gym at a “quieter” time and though 99% were wiping equipment before and after it was annoying those that blatantly didn’t… Annoying but there’s always going to be annoying people even post covid…
Well done for putting your needs first
Hi @Ismo I think you have actually done what we all should do.
Blood Cancer UK and other similar charities lobby in the media and with the government.
Many of us have lobbied our MP’s.
I see Blood Cancer UK as being a tree and the strong trunk and some branches, but we are all on all the branches publicising, raising awareness and spreading the word locally.
The main population are only listening to the government, we have to and are listening to our medical professionals.
A lot of my family and friends have been so surprised I am still self isolating.
Thanks Erica I love the tree analogy happy to be a branch doing my bit, naturally being a little cunning I suggested that the persons I emailed were already wearing masks etc but just explained why it was important to continue and encourage others to do so Oh Rammie I am sorry you have to keep your diagnosis secret it must cut you off from support to some extent. mind you I didnt have any choice but to go public with my diagnosis as was whipped into hospital at a moments notice and my employer wanted to know exactly why I wasnt there teaching final year students just before exams RE the supermarket I just ask any staff who serve me to put a mask on to protect me and mention that here may be other vulnerable people who are not prepared to ask so good idea to wear mask at till? Oh dear sorry if I sound selfish but I have family commitments and want to avoid Covid and stay alive and I believe now is the time to raise the issue before the non mask wearers become the majority.
Hi @Rammie18 I think having to keep your diagnosis a secret from family and friends makes it even more courageous that you are posting on here.
We will support you so you are never alone.
Absolutely agree with Erica Good Luck Ramme there are down sides to being open with your diagnosis too, not sure how I’d have tackled it but thanks to my boss’s PA I never had a choice. At least it s an advantage now so i can lobby now, but I,m sure it lost me a promotion and very possibly a contract
Oh @Ismo yes, I think I had a similar experience. Because my department knew about my diagnosis they were worried that they did not really know what I did ( although I did it well !!) so suddenly I found all the proactive lovely roles I had being taken away from me and I was left with a reactive office bound role.
You must be gutted when you have so much potential and so much to give.
It certainly would be a crappy way for them to find out but I’m totally in control of my situation without me worrying about them worrying about me or meddling with things.
I like being here as either people empathise through dealing with the same or have experience with it. I’m more likely to adhere to advice or listen if I trust where they are coming from.
Also I have no expectation from them either… so not disappointed if they don’t do the right thing or say the right thing when I need it.
Though I never doubt my ability as a teacher and know the kids appreciate and see the effort and work I put in despite being chilled and relaxed… I’ll never have an opportunity at my current school… my diagnosis is the only reason I’m still there as with covid and my diagnosis they have no idea what they are doing so theyre basically letting me do what I want.
I totally emphasise with not being promoted because of a reason you know but they can’t say for discrimination and it’ll make them look bad… Story of my life…
But to be honest it’s made me more determined and stronger as a person that or I’ve just learnt to deal with situations better and accept disappointment better.
It’s really good to hear you’ve done this @Ismo, have they been understanding? You may have seen this already but we along with 40 other charities wrote this open letter to the public - Open letter from cancer charities to the public | Blood Cancer UK
I am sorry to hear you had difficulties with work. That must have been tough during an already overwhelming time. I do hope you’re doing ok.
Being a teacher you’ll know that you are OK so long as you can be there in that classroom /tutorial/lecture Hall and the powers that be don,t have to find someone to cover for you because of time as an inpatient or too many outpatients appointments doesnt matter why you are off chemo or a sprained ankle you become “unreliable” irrespective of how many years of work without absences they have had from you before. This is before Covid of course and on line opportunities. One door closes another opens so I didn’t push for contract renewal and then charged them goodly fees when they got in a mess with the professional body and had to buy me back as a consultant but trickier if it is earlier in your career I know.
Thanks Alice the trouble with work was some years ago when I was first diagnosed made me change direction and probably damaged my pension but on the whole I have enjoyed the challenge. I think the letter to the public is great.
In general people have responded well to my email and stated that hey were continuing to wear masks and social ly distance on public transport and in shops
Quite a number of family and friends tried to reassure me that Govt research showed that everyone was protected by the vaccine! However a few pointed out that we had to learn to live " a normal life"with Covid and we cannot go on wearing masks and social distancing for ever. One colleague said he appreciated my situation and suggested I wear an FFP3(?) mask if I was so worried whenever I was out of the house as he had no intention of continuing to wear a “face nappy”. This last comment did not bother me unduly as I was already aware of his anti vaccine views being young and fit and tending to regard all illness as brought on by lack of exercise obesity etc and thus at least partially the fault of the patient. So roughly 70% positive 25% ambivalent or ignored email 5% negative