Everyone loves a good list (and on the Internet, nothing gets more traffic than a list, preferably focusing on cats). But some lists manage to find that perfect balance between purpose and humor.
This is one of those lists.
Karen Hobbs, a British stand-up comedienne, was diagnosed with Stage 1b cervical cancer in late 2014. She underwent a complicated 4+ hour surgery called a radical trachelectomy, and one year later wanted to share some advice on how to cope with the preparation and the aftermath.
Her list, titled “Pre and Post-Surgery Top Tips” and featured on her blog “quarter-life cancer”, somehow manages to be both incredibly insightful and often hilarious. We encourage you to click through to her full post here (or you can read a summary from Buzzfeed here). Some of our favorites:
Karen also provides real, helpful suggestions on how to prepare and manage through your surgery, recommending cotton balls to help endure irritating oxygen tubes, chamomile lotion for skin irritations, and a general sense of understanding and openness (Leave your dignity at the hospital entrance and Don’t worry that you’re not coping properly).
And then there’s this:
Me: I didn’t go on holiday, I had an operation.
Colleague: Oh, what was it? Did you have your tonsils out or something?
Me: No, no. My cervix.
It was wonderfully uncomfortable, and I loved it.
Sometimes, the easiest way to emotionally cope with a difficult diagnosis is to find the humor in the absurdity. We applaud Karen on her courage and creativity, and wish her the best in her continued recovery.
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