A young Lancaster woman struggling to cope with a diagnosis of a rare form of cancer has found inner strength through the power of hypnosis following her referral to local cancer support charity CancerCare.
Suzanne Cremin was rushed to hospital last October after experiencing severe stomach cramps, which turned out to be gallstones.
“I had to have three stones removed and also my gallbladder which was quite scary in itself, but nothing could have prepared me for what was about to happen next.”
Following Suzanne’s op, an ultrasound revealed something far more sinister: a tumour, on her kidney. The biopsy results showed the tumour was indeed cancerous – Renal Cell Carcinoma – an incredibly rare form of cancer that only affects around 15 people each year in the UK.
“If I was going to get cancer then I may as well get one of the rarest forms there is!” the 30-year-old said.
“I can joke about it now but being told I had cancer after thinking I had gallstones is pretty shocking to say the least.
“I reckon most people would have a hard time taking that piece of news in.”
After an operation to remove the tumour – which turned out to be more than 13cm long – as well as half a kidney, doctors told Suzanne she was lucky they had been able to remove it successfully and without the need for chemotherapy.
“Funny thing is I didn’t feel lucky at all,” she said. “After my op I was expected just to get on with life and return to normal but I found that to be such a struggle.
“I was finding it much harder to cope mentally with it all than I was physically.
“I just kept asking myself, why me? I am young and healthy. It didn’t make sense to me.
“Cancer at 30 is the last thing you expect. I just lost all my confidence in life, all my plans and hopes for the future.
“I felt really depressed. I didn’t even want to leave the house – it was taking me five hours just to get dressed some days.
“But I then I thought enough is enough and I knew I needed help. I really wanted to move past these feelings and get better.
“So I visited my GP who then referred me to CancerCare, a local cancer charity. It was the best thing he ever did.”
CancerCare supports local people like Suzanne whose lives are affected by cancer as well as their families, carers and anyone who has been bereaved by cancer.
They offer a wide range of free professional support services delivered by experienced and qualified staff including counselling, hypnotherapy, aromatherapy massage, creative art therapies and exercise classes to name but a few.
The charity also offers a dedicated Children and Young People’s Service for children as young as three.
Suzanne soon started a course of hypnotherapy sessions at CancerCare’s centre in Slyne Road, Lancaster.
“A lot of people think hypnotherapy is just Paul McKenna type stuff but it’s so much more than tha” Suzanne said.
“I think everyone should try it! Hypnotherapy is like receiving an injection of positive thoughts.
“During the session you are put into a deep state of relaxation. It really helped me deal with my anxieties.
“It has also given me new mental strength, clarity, and way of coping better with everyday life.
“It has also brought some stability back into my life and given me motivation to start looking forward to my future – I’ve started exercising again, something I had previously given up on.
“And, I am also getting married next year to my wonderful finance! Both our worlds came crashing down the day I was told I had cancer but now I feel I’ve turned a corner and am starting to feel stronger and happier every day.
“The wedding will be amazing, I can’t wait!
“The work CancerCare do is so important and I just want everyone to know about how they have helped me come to terms with my illness.
“Hypnotherapy might seem a bit strange to some people but it’s really helped me in ways I didn’t think it could.
“The great thing about CancerCare is that all their services are free of charge and I only had to wait a couple of weeks for an appointment.
Just like me, you never know when you or your family might need them.”
For more information about CancerCare call 01524 381820 or visit www.cancercare.org.uk, follow CancerCare on Twitter @CancerCareLocal or on
Facebook at CancerCareCharity.