Margaret Finnegan

My first contact with the SECHC was a telephone call with Jennifer who, having obtained some brief details, recommended my telephoning the breast cancer support group leader, Mina. After a conversation with her, I decided I would look to the SECHC to support me with a holistic approach to my care, alongside the medical.

I was diagnosed during the height of lockdown and the SECHC's services were limited but I was able to start counselling by telephone with Maddie and distance reiki with Yvonne. Once things started to open up again, I had facials with Tereza; reflexology with Wendy; and massage with Justyna. I was pleased to have been able to benefit from these therapists so early on before surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy. There is so much knowledge and information at the centre that I found relevant and up to date. Later on, I had haircuts with Michele who has immense experience with new hair growth post cancer treatments. I briefly dipped my toes into the online Tai Chi and yoga.

Once my main medical treatments had ended, I enrolled in the Loss Recovery Programme with Joan. These insightful sessions have aided completeness on past relationships and experiences and provide the tools for moving forward and being able to deal with any future issues which may arise emotionally especially connected to a cancer diagnosis.

My husband also joined the SECHC as he was already dealing with his father's pancreatic cancer diagnosis at the time of mine. He benefitted from counselling via Zoom with Frances and I believe it was a relief for him to be able to communicate with someone outside of our family and friendship group.

The centre is a welcoming place that has a plethora of information; complementary therapies and support. I recommend taking a look at the centre's website; Facebook page; Instagram or contacting them direct if you are affected by cancer whether it's yourself going through treatment or a loved one. I am immensely grateful to the SECHC which has helped me cope through this difficult time and continues to support me and my family.