By Tom Eremondi
Read time: 3 minutes
Hello and welcome to the first entry in Bladder Cancer Canada’s new Bladder Blog!
Short for “Web Log,” a blog refers to a list of journal entries posted on a web page and is a platform where a writer or a group of writers share their personal views on an individual subject.
Our blog’s purpose is to share information, stories, emotions, and humour. Whether you’re a survivor, newly diagnosed, or a family member, the hope is to inspire, educate, calm, and bring some laughter to your journey.
As this is the first blog, we’d like to introduce ourselves:
Tawny Barratt is the Communications Specialist with Bladder Cancer Canada. She joined in August 2019, bringing 15 years of communications experience in the non-profit sector. She’s passionate about writing traditional communications and embraces all forms of digital communications, including social media and video.
Tawny has always been drawn to working with causes close to her heart. Originally from Halifax, she is a breast cancer survivor and also lost her mother to the disease. She’s excited to contribute to the fight against bladder cancer in Canada.
Tom Eremondi has been a professional communicator for 32 years. He’s currently communications director for Saskatoon City Hospital Foundation and previously spent 15 years as a features writer for the Saskatoon Star Phoenix. Also a cancer survivor, Tom was diagnosed with bladder cancer in Feb. 2017 and underwent trans urethral resection of bladder tumour (TURBT) that month. His cancer was diagnosed as low-grade, non-invasive and he’s been cancer free for almost four years. Tom decided soon after his diagnosis to treat cancer as he treats almost everything – with corny humour!
Vancouverite Kit Schindell enjoyed a 42-year career in health care, retiring at the director level in 2012. In the 1990s she also began editing fiction and non-fiction, a secondary career, which continues to this day.
Kit’s husband was healthy until suffering a stroke in 2006. He was then diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin lymphoma in 2014, receiving chemo and eventual remission. In 2015 he underwent open heart surgery. The next year he received a new and worrying cancer diagnosis and endured dozens of diagnostic procedures, appointments, consults, and, finally surgery. He received a very hopeful outcome, which was a great relief. Then in January of 2019 he was discovered to have a new fresh intruder in his system – advanced bladder cancer. Eight months and ten hospitalizations later, he passed away. They were married 46 years. Kit brings her wealth of health care and editing expertise as a “book doctor” to the blog, along with 13 years experience as a caregiver to her husband. Involved in her church, charities and health organizations, she’s also an active grandmother to six awesome kids, one of whom also has a blood cancer.
Military Officer and Sea King helicopter Navigator, Rob Truscott will be officially retiring in 2021 after receiving a medical release. The now Halifax resident was first diagnosed with bladder cancer in 2014 while serving in Yellowknife. He was posted to Edmonton for four years and has since undergone five TURBT and 27 Bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) treatments. Upon completion of his treatments he was moved to Halifax in 2018 to complete his career.
During this time of convalescence, Rob turned to writing and web design courses to occupy his brain. He started a Facebook page and a blog called Cancer Sucks Chronicles. He’s a lifelong volunteer, including Scouts Canada, youth lacrosse teams, charitable events, Bladder Cancer Canada’s support group and walk planning team in Edmonton, and now a member of the BCC communications team.
Married with four children, Stephen Wilson lives in St. Thomas, Ontario. He was diagnosed with bladder cancer in 2013 and had radical cystectomy/prostatectomy and neobladder construction. The cancer was determined to be Stage 4 and Stephen was given a prognosis for 15% five-year survival. He decided to research everything that might contribute to the return or spread of the cancer. He quit smoking, went vegan, exercised daily and eliminated stress by retiring early. Six years later, he heard the great proclamation from his oncologist: “You’re cured. Don’t come back!” The son of journalists, writing is in his blood. He spent 30 years as a broadcast journalist, corporate communicator and marketing writer.
If you are in need of support during your bladder cancer journey, please visit our online forum here.
We’d welcome your feedback and ideas for future topics. Please leave us a comment or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Disclaimer: The Bladder Cancer Canada blog is not a substitute for professional medical advice or treatment. The content on this blog shares the personal views of the writer and is for information only. Always consult your physician and do not rely on the information on this page when making decisions about your health.