When I was a child I remember reading the slogan “ Cancer Can be beaten” which was displayed as part of a campaign by the Cancer Association of South Africa. At the time I obviously didn’t understand this deeply, I just remember reading it on billboards and hearing about it on TV adverts. I thought about this because while combating cancer seems to have been a top priority in my childhood days, these days there doesn’t seem to be much campaigning, and recently more and more people seem to be getting cancer.
Last week we visited a family member who has been diagnosed with leukaemia. In her case the doctors can’t do anything and so she basically has to live with it. She’s been given some strong pain killers to combat the pain but there is no other treatment they can do. This lady made me realise that indeed cancer can be beaten. Maybe not physically, but with a positive attitude, this disease can be stopped from taking over your life.
She calmly sat there telling us how she is not afraid of death because death is inevitable and how else will she return to the Lord, who created her. Her words were something like this; We are not going to a terrible place. We are going back to Allah who made us and who loves us. She is trying to live each day to the fullest and she seems happy and content despite her illness. She also told us that this disease has given her a different perspective on life and now she knows that she should only focus on good things. The thing that stood out though was that she said to us that there are days when she feels sorry for herself, but then she reprimands herself and asks herself what is there to complain about.
Another strong woman I know, the Director of a counselling institute I worked at was also recently diagnosed with breast cancer. I saw her after her first chemotherapy treatment. You would expect her to be in bed, but she was at her office in the counselling centre. She told me that she had to fight this and could not let it get to her. She was at the office doing what she could at her own pace, but just being around people made her feel better.
These are just two examples, but there are many more. These days it seems that cancer is all around. I know of at least 5 people who have recently being diagnosed with cancer, and those are only people within my very small social/family network. Many people agree that this disease appears to be more prevalent these days. Allah alone knows what the true reasons for this are. But from what I can see, cancer can be beaten! It’s not medication or chemotherapy that can beat it, but a positive attitude and willingness to accept what is happening to you. In the end, even if someone does die from cancer, the cancer would not have beaten them if they were positive till the end. After all it is not a disease that kills you. The disease is just an excuse for our return.
I pray that Allah helps all those with cancer to remain positive and strong and if He wishes to cure them, then I pray for their cure, but if Allah wishes to take them, then I pray that they find peace in the hereafter. May Allah ease the burden of all His servants!