Participant – Emily’s Story.

My Grandma is my motivation to take part in Miles4Radiotherapy, and to become a therapeutic radiographer, She passed away in 2020 and I am using the compassion and knowledge I gained when caring for her to help me progress with my studies.

Prior to her lung cancer diagnosis, I had some experience of being in a radiotherapy department when I shadowed members of an RT team while on work experience.  Three years later I have now reconnected with this same team, as a student on placement and have been lucky enough to meet other members of this exceptional team.

While my grandma was having radiotherapy, I began considering if this was something I would want to do. She mentioned this to the staff at a day of treatment and, they encouraged her to invite me along so I could see what they were doing. So, I did, I went along with her. This was an unfamiliar hospital, and I was apprehensive. But the moment I stepped into the treatment room with her, experienced the process; saw how the staff treated my grandma and myself and experienced the process, I had made up my mind.

Me and my lovely Grandma.

It was incredibly special because I had got to see a part of her treatment pathway that the rest of the family hadn’t and was able to reassure her as the staff talked me through everything. I was able to talk to my family about what was happening and answer their questions.

As a student, I’ve not only made incredible, life-long friends and through the learning I have been able to connect more with my mother’s breast cancer journey. When, I found out she had also had radiotherapy my respect for the profession only increased. Her treatment journey began in 2002 when I was a year old, and her cancer recurred not long after her 40th birthday. To get to learn from and work with the staff where she had her treatment is huge.

I don’t think I could see myself doing anything else, in or outside the NHS, because all I want is to have a positive impact on the profession and raise awareness for an amazing charity dedicated towards supporting patients as they receive radiotherapy and supporting their families too.

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