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A Strong Voice

Spectrum

A career in radio broadcasting saw Julie McCrossin spend plenty of time inside a room alone and under pressure. “I was used to being in a glass box by myself with people on the other side communicating to me through my headset or on a computer screen,” she says.

But this meant nothing when lying on a linac machine receiving her first radiation therapy for stage 4 oropharyngeal cancer while her loved ones waited outside.

“I was flushed, having heart palpations and sweating,” she recalls. “I thought, ‘my god, I’m having a panic attack’.” There was little time for Julie to prepare for the 30 straight days of radiation and weekly chemotherapy at Sydney’s St Vincent’s Hospital.

A month earlier, cancer wasn’t even on the radar for the then 58-year-old. “It never crossed my mind that I could have cancer. Never.”

When it was all done, I went outside and sobbed my heart out

Published in the June 2018 issue of Spectrum.

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