My name is John Kirtland and I was diagnosed with breast cancer in October 2008. It all started whilst having a shower; I felt a marble sized lump behind my right nipple, the nipple had been inverted for a number of years and was slightly different in colour.
As a result of my cancer; I’ve been on quite a trip, becoming an Ambassador for male breast cancer in South Africa. I have met the most wonderful people, appeared on television a few times, been interviewed on the radio and appeared in numerous magazines. It all came about when Jenny Crwys-Williams announced on Radio 702 that Moments in Time (MIT) were looking for cancer patients who would be willing to sell their bodies (that’s my version of it – I love a good joke!) in aid of a cancer trust calendar.
A few weeks later I was chosen as Mr October (Breast Cancer month) for the 2010 calendar – What an adventure and what a good cause. Sadly the Moments in Time project that started in 2003, and helped so many people for so long, has come to an end.
Humour has often helped me to put things in perspective – Especially when people are telling you to get your affairs in order! Speaking of humour: A woman visits the doctor and he gives her the bad news. “You have cancer. Best put your affairs in order.” The woman is shocked and drags her daughter off to the club for a martini for her nerves. 3 or 4 martinis later they are joined by some of the woman’s friends and she tells them she’s been diagnosed with AIDS. The friends give her their condolences and beat a hasty retreat. The daughter asks her why she said she had AIDS. “The doctor said I must put my affairs in order. And I don’t want any of them having an affair with your father after I’m gone!”
Cancer feeds on sugar and now I’ve been told I’m diabetic! That’s all I need! I never had a sweet-tooth before but try me now! I’ll put anything sweet in my mouth! I’m finding it quite a challenge to do what I’m told. Thank goodness for the support of my wife and family.
Since my diagnosis I have read many articles on cancers and it never ceases to amaze me the number of people researching it – let alone the money that goes into it – so hang in there!!!
The fight must go on – We must find a cure!