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.