Editorial comment – Mind over everything else

Breast cancer survivor Teresia Manabola Rokodovu. Picture: Supplied

A Lautoka mother of four children is determined to fight breast cancer.
Her message hinges on the line that positive thoughts can make a huge difference in our lives. It’s about mind over matter, she says, having lived with cancer for five years now.
Today we talk about her journey on page 20, fighting a sickness that frightens people.
It isn’t a pleasant prospect to be diagnosed with any form of cancer.
Many people are overwhelmed. They become frightened, already demoralised by the prospect of death.
That’s when the battle, this Lautoka mother says, becomes a massive challenge.
That’s when the will to live must be nurtured and assisted to fight the sickness.
The 40-year-old mother, who prefers to remain anonymous, continues to battle cancer today.
Her journey, she says, has been tough and taught her many lessons along the way.
It has taught her to refocus her priorities. The sickness took away a career she had dedicated 18 years of her life to.
She said her mantra while battling the dreaded illness was “listen to your body”.
It is important, she said, for people diagnosed with cancer not to think or believe they are going to die.
That is not the way to live if you want to recover from cancer, she insists.
Cancer, she said, must not dictate or define your life.
She spoke about removing negative energy and focused on her family and living healthy.
That’s when she noticed what she termed was a dramatic change in her body.
“I feel more alive now than I have ever felt in my entire life. Every day I wake up and see my children and they are healthy and happy, it gives me a renewed strength to beat this illness.” Like most people who battle the disease, she said she struggled mentally and psychologically in the early parts of her diagnosis.
Her story is a powerful reminder of the resilience of the human spirit and the willingness to overcome seemingly impossible odds.
It talks of the important support base that must be nurtured to provide positive vibes for cancer patients.
The thought of cancer is frightening for many people. That is the harsh reality attached to this illness.
Family members of those suffering from the illness go through many emotional phases.
They play an important role in the healing process though.
Last month the President Jioji Konrote reminded us that cancer does not discriminate.
He urged Fijians to live a healthy life.
Speaking at the launch of the child cancer awareness month which runs through August, he raised the importance of early detection.
He urged parents to live healthier lives for the sake of their children.
In the face of the common fear that surrounds every form of cancer, there is a positive note that embraces early detection.
It could make a difference.
There is a great need for vigilance and awareness, and as our fighter in Lautoka points out, a commitment to live healthy and to stay positive. Mind over matter!

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