Subscribe to our
Subscribe to the Unicorn Foundation e-Newsletter and become a Friend by entering your details in the spaces provided. Friends will be kept informed on the progress we make and how the donations are being allocated.
1. What impact has NETs had on your life?
NETS has hugely impacted my life…going from a full and
hectic life, of designing objects and exhibiting our art installation works and
jewellery, everything had to stop so I could just focus one day at a time.
I was incredibly fortunate that my life partner, Tony, was
somehow able to not only look after me full-time but also to continue to run
our creative side of things at the same time…somehow a superhuman effort on his
I guess this just allows me to focus entirely on fighting
the NETS both physically and mentally, as I was determined that I would not
allow it to win.
I am one of
the unbelievably fortunate ones to overcome NETS as I have currently been
cleared of any detectable cancer in my body.
after 4 months after I had finished my last radio therapy, I am still getting
some fatigue, and the road back to health has been a long and annoying one, but
life goes on, and I am nearly back to my former self.
For here I
am determined to become even more fit and healthy if the NETS does return, and
have a strategic mental and physical plan to fight it if it happens.
The way that
I look at it, I have had a deadly disease, and I am lucky enough to come out
the other side, but life is always too short, so get on and enjoy and celebrate
every day.2. What has been most helpful to you in your NET experience?
I had an
very large and aggressive NETS, and had decided at the outset of diagnosis that
I wanted and needed the most aggressive treatment that could be directed at
ownership of the NETS and fought hard to ensure that I took the incredibly
strong treatments (which included 6 weeks very high level radio therapy and
To ensure I
was doing everything that I could possibly do for myself, Tony made sure that I
was eating really healthy, with lots of protein and high levels of vegetables,
as well as continuing to walk for exercise as much as possible. Getting into
nature is always an uplifting and positive influence for me, so walking in the
sunshine was important.
I was born
an eternal optimist, and honestly it totally helps to retain a healthy mind,
for a healthy body. Why not look at a positive approach to each day, and
maintain a mindset that you can overcome anything….it can only add to your
mental and physical strength.
I was very
lucky with my team of people that were treating me, and this allowed me to have
the confidence that I could over come this.
Of course, I
had sought out the best possible Ongology team of Professor Epstein, at The
Kinghorn, St Vincents, Sydney and experienced Radio Therapy team, of Dr Annie
Ho, both of which had experience and knowledge in the treatment of NETS. My
NETS was so large and aggressive that it was off any sort of grading scale, so
my treatment was quite aggressive, but that is what I wanted and needed. Also,
I had an incredible backup of The KInghorn with a nursing co-ordinator, all of
which allowed me to have huge confidence and support in my fight against this,
with even the small things being dealt with fast and efficiently.
spending nearly a month in hospital at St Vincents, with the incredibly
professional doctors and nurses, again allowed me to have confidence in the
leant early on that it was my body and that I needed to take ownership of the
NETS and the treatments, so both myself and Tony asked so many questions, so we
had a clear understanding of what I was getting and the outcome. Information is
important to be able to make an objective decision on your treatment.
At one point
I was very unwell with massive infections from my body trying to fight the
effects of the radio therapy, and they wanted to stop the treatment. I refused
this as I knew that I could take some more treatment, so after having another
three treatments, I knew I had had enough, and had to come back to the last
three treatments after I was recovered from the infections…but I did finish the
treatment, and that was important to me.
the elements that have helped fight the NETS have been Professional Expertise
of my Team, First class facilities while being treated, Information,
Objectivity, Personal Positivity & Determination3. What advice would you give to a newly diagnosed patient?
ownership of the NETS…it is your body and it is time to mentally and physically
fight this disease.
a strong and innovative team of medical professionals that know this disease,
and can offer options that you are going to get the best outcomes from.
Ask as many
questions as you like of your medical team and express the way that you want to
fight the disease.
well, with lots of protein and health veggies, nuts, grains etc, to give your
body the fuel that it needs to do all you can to contribute to the fight going
on in your body. Speak to a nutritionist if you need any advice.
stretch a little bit to keep your body active.
every day…you don’t gain anything by being negative about any possible
outcomes….the brain is a very powerful thing and I believe positive thought can
contribute towards wellbeing, so why not give it a go!