The battle against cancer is one that takes unbelievable strength and determination. On International Childhood Cancer Day Jayant Kandoi shares his experience fighting cancer 6 times – and the life lessons that came with each experience.
Q1. You were diagnosed with cancer at an early age. How did you cope with the disease as a child?
Ans. I fought the disease with my own planning and strategies. I googled the side effects of my therapy and noted them down. I made up my mind that I would have nausea twice, and that’s it. This was my mantra for my positive thoughts during my treatment. I had already convinced myself that cancer was just a disease and I would beat it soon.
Q2. How has your family helped you in your battle with cancer, not once but 6 times? What do you have to say about the reaction of uncles, aunties, relatives, and society in general, when Cancer kept coming back?
Ans. Despite facing so many challenges in their lives, my family was determined to help me beat the disease. We were shattered financially, yet my family did not lose hope. My relatives and the neighbours definitely talked negatively about it, but it’s always your family that keeps you going. I feel blessed to have received treatment at a very nominal cost in Government hospitals. I have no shame in accepting that. Lastly, I want to say that if cancer has given me pain, it has also given me fame.
Q3. What’s your advice to parents who have kids diagnosed with Cancer?
Ans. I am not the one to advise the parents of the patients because it is a very difficult phase for the survivor and his parents. But I can say that at this point of time, it is necessary to have positive energy and stay motivated all the time. I would suggest that we always follow a never say die attitude. Easier said than done, but that’s what works.
Q4. The best way to defeat Cancer is early detection. Do you think people in India have enough awareness of this subject? And if no, how must we spread this awareness?
Ans. I feel cancer is like a taboo in India. People don’t like to talk about it. People in our country need to understand that it’s our responsibility to talk about the disease and spread awareness. I am shocked to tell you that cancer is treated as a pandemic in many parts of India. To begin this revolution, the movement should start from our homes. We young people should be the change makers.
Q5. Cancer is a very expensive disease, which involves great expenditure for proper treatment. India has a high population of relatively poor people. What do you propose as a solution for this?
Ans. Treatment of cancer is projected to be a luxurious treatment. Big doctors and hospitals create a sense of fear in the patients. Treatment of cancer is easily available at government hospitals, but due to their mindsets, people avoid going there. When the fear of cancer vanishes from our minds, then we may find cancer medicines in medical stores just like paracetamol. We will start treating it like any other common disease.
Q6. How do you stay positive while battling cancer?
Ans. We should remain optimistic about our lives. We should always create an ambience of good vibes around us. Positivity is the key to happiness. The more positive you are, the happier your life will be
Q7. You wear many hats – you’re an entrepreneur, motivational speaker, author etc. What do you do in your free time for fun? (Hobbies, interests, movies)
Ans. The only thing I like to do is write poetry. I worked in two of my start-ups, both of which were not very successful. I also sometimes go shopping for my own work, so basically, I try to do everything that keeps me engaged and busy too.
Q8. You’re a real-life superhero. You battled cancer 6 times! What advice do you have for those who are in search of hope and smiles?
Ans. I would say that smiling is very important as it is an answer to every question. There is no need to cry about your problems as this will not solve them. So, stay happy in your life and spread positivity. Share your story with others and inspire them.