Supporting the

Neuroendocrine Cancer Community

*New Patient Story* ‘That Fraudulent Feeling’ by Simon

Aug 23, 2023

In a candid and inspiring update, Simon Walsh, a Neuroendocrine Cancer UK Ambassador, reflects on his pathway since his decision to retire early due to an unexpected cancer diagnosis. Simon, who was diagnosed with cancer two and a half years ago, questions the concept of feeling like a “fraud” for being relatively okay despite his ongoing battle with the disease.

Simon’s regular scans, blood tests, and appointments continue at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, where he receives excellent care from an ENETs Centre of Excellence. The COVID-19 pandemic prompted a shift to telephone appointments, providing convenience and efficiency. While different from in-person consultations, Simon appreciates the benefits, especially given his previous 50-mile commute. His recent scan results have brought positive news, with stability and no progression.

Emotionally and mentally, Simon demonstrates resilience. He acknowledges experiencing anger, sadness, fear, and guilt in waves but has found ways to manage these emotions. He shares insights into his coping strategies and the gradual reduction of his “comfort blanket,” a medical binder that once provided solace during appointments.

Simon’s story resonates with many cancer patients. Despite the challenging journey, he believes that being “okay” with having cancer is valid and important. Simon’s positive outlook and determination shine through as he embarks on a 6-day trip to New York City with his wife, celebrating their joint 40th birthday. He acknowledges the need to pack medication and a blue badge due to his condition, but he remains undeterred, emphasising that he’s ready to savor new experiences and embrace life to the fullest.

Simon’s journey exemplifies the strength that those with neuroendocrine cancer can harness and the importance of finding contentment amid adversity. His story offers a message of hope and resilience to others facing similar challenges.

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