I attended the patient and caregiver meeting in Winnipeg where Dr. Rahul Bansal was presenting. I spoke first to one of the staff members of Kidney Cancer Canada. I was so nervous, scared and apprehensive but I immediately felt the sincerity and dedication of everyone involved.
I was the only Indigenous person in the room.
Kidney Cancer Canada made me feel so accepted that I didn’t, and couldn’t, say as much as I wanted; it had bottled up in me. They showed such empathy for me and were so straightforward. I had a hard time and then relief. I had to pull away because I was ashamed to cry. But this brief moment lifted my spirit and my will to live.
It’s hard to communicate how long and intensely I suffered. I felt lost, unworthy, ill-advised and ill; just plain ill and not emotionally strong enough to ask for help. I am so, so grateful for Kidney Cancer Canada. I dedicate my story and experience with the sincere hope that no one goes through what I did at the beginning of my experience with kidney cancer.
I live on the country outskirts of Stonewall, Manitoba – a small town outside of Winnipeg. I am isolated there and reaching out to live despite this disease and all it’s affects. I fight the shame about what happened to me but I believe that by being open and forthright, it is positive and I will heal or at least not struggle so hard.
At my sickest time, I suddenly found myself alone. Today I understand. Some people don’t have the emotional psychological capacity to take part in the baffling effects of this disease.
I had my surgery on October 28, 2019.
Right now, even though I know I am not alone in this experience, I struggle.
I’m grateful for Kidney Cancer Canada once again. I am here with my experience to share to help… it is all I have to give and I give it all!
Pidamaya – Thank you (Dakota language)
Mitakuye Oyasin – We are all related.
Jaye “Eagle Spirit Boy” La Vallee