Written by Connie, wife and caregiver to her husband and melanoma patient, Ted.
A year ago my husband was diagnosed with Stage 4 melanoma with metastases to the lungs. Our world suddenly and drastically changed where fear and worry took over our days. In a whirlwind of appointments and consultations it became apparent that there would be numerous tests, scans, followup appointments and overnight trips that would take us to a specialized oncologist. Of course there was the chemotherapy as well. Once things became somewhat routine like, if I may be brave to say so, of just becoming a new norm the other part of life began to take over. Suddenly, I became the main income earner for my family along with caregiver alongside being a mother. How were we going to get through this? Or, how was I going to get use to looking at my husband daily crying inside with the thought of losing him to this dreadful disease? Living in a very rural and remote area I had no options for caregiver support, I had no family support and so I stood alone in my rollercoaster emotions trying to be strong and positive for my husband. Then one day I came across the Save Your Skin Foundation and met 2 incredible people, Karran Finlay and Kathy Barnard. These 2 people reached out to me from a distance, listened to me and in doing so I began to feel hope and renewed strength. I suddenly felt that maybe I wasn’t alone and I continue now to feel this way as I know in my heart that they are there and will continue to be so as the journey of fighting cancer continues with my husband.
Right now there is not a lot I can do to give back to this incredible Foundation and these 2 beautiful, compassionate women, but I can write this to say THANK YOU! To say that without them, I as a caregiver would be totally lost and in despair. To say THANK YOU for not ignoring me, for listening everytime I email or phone, for never being too busy to open your hearts! THANK YOU!