Nick Simmonds, Catherine Beck, Dr Gill Rouse and Sister Vivienne McCrorie

Catherine Beck is currently undergoing treatment for Acute Myeloid Leukaemia on Rendcomb Ward. You can follow Catherine’s journey on Twitter @cathstell.

“I was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukaemia on the 4th May. If I’d known then that I was about to have a three month stay in hospital I would’ve kept on top of my laundry, as relying on my partner to bring in the right underwear and clothing was interesting to say the least.

I was told that I couldn’t leave my room whilst I was on Rendcomb Ward. Not because I’d been naughty or because the nurses didn’t like me! I was neutropenic (no immune system) and they didn’t want me to catch an infection that could threaten my recovery.

I was concerned about boredom and horrible processed hospital food, so I was really grateful to find that my room had a TV, DVD player, a fridge, and that I had access to an exercise bike. Each has made a difference to my sanity, and I’m so grateful to LINC for providing them.

The biggest thing I grew to love was having access to a psychologist. You think you know everything about yourself and how best to cope with stress/anxiety…it took three months of treatment, confined to a room, to show me how wrong I was.

The psychologist, part funded by LINC, has really helped to teach me how best to cope with my down moments. I’m still learning, but I can already feel the difference in how I cope when I have a down day. What’s more, my partner and family are able to talk to the psychologist too, and it means everything to me knowing that they can get help when they need it.

From the start, LINC has felt more like a great network of friends, not just employees of a charity. Everyone there takes a genuine interest in your health and well-being, and I’d hate to think what state I’d be in if it weren’t for their help. LINC has really made a difference to my experience of having cancer, and I’ll always be grateful to them and those that support the charity.”

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