I was 38 when I was diagnosed.
I actually went to the doctor for something else but made mention of my other symptoms, which had gradually gotten worse over a 3-year period.
My doctor said that it could be anything, but it would be best to have a blood test and be referred to have a colonoscopy.
On March 21st, 2019 I went and had my colonoscopy.
I came out of the procedure very quickly and returned to the waiting room. At that stage, I was all alone, as my partner had gone to have some lunch, thinking I would have been in there for two hours or so.
The doctor walked into the room and straight away apologised. He mentioned that in his experience you looked to have cancer. A biopsy was taken, I was then told to have an immediate MRI.
All the tests confirmed that I had cancer, except the blood test. I had stage 3 colorectal cancer and underwent 5 weeks of radiation and chemotherapy. During that time, I was extremely lucky and only experienced fatigue. I continued to go to work each day and go to the gym.
In August I had my surgery and was given a temporary stoma and then in Feb 2020 I had my reversal.
I would say the hardest part of it all has been the surgery and the changes to my body. Mentally I don't think I had prepared myself for the changes and how they would affect me.
I struggled for the first 3 weeks after each surgery to build my confidence back up and believe that I could get through the next stage. Now five weeks post-surgery, I have built myself back up again and feel great. For me, meditation has helped a lot to rebuild me spiritually and mentally.