Cancer, it affects us all.


My name is Merv Adlington and I’m the Acting Chairman of the Penrith Community Men’s Shed. In March this year I was diagnosed with a suspect mole on my left shoulder which I had surgically removed. 2 weeks later I was informed that it was a stage 4 advanced Melanoma cancer. After hearing the word cancer I didn’t hear too much more. Another couple of weeks later I saw my Medical Oncologist who informed me that it had traveled to my lungs, was inoperative and finished his statement with the word TERMINAL, 1-3 years.

A lot has happened since that visit including having the cancer spread to my liver and most recently to my brain. The outlook seems rather bleak and very uncertain for not only me but my family. I have a wonderful loving wife and family who are dealing with the disease alongside of me and who without their love, support and encouragement I don’t know where I would be at this moment. The title of this post says “Cancer, it affects us all” and truer words couldn’t be said. It affects the person with the disease as well as family, friends and mates around them. Shock, tears, confusion, disbelief, anger, emotions going wild, times of wanting to just be alone and try to forget about it, planning for the future and so many more…….. and this goes on every day, all day. When I come into a room with family or friends and the conversation stops or people don’t talk to you because they don’t know what to say, your family conversations center around the cancer, treatments and future plans and not what has been going on that day with the family, these are some of the ways that cancer affects us ALL. I’m so fortunate as I have already said to have a fantastic family, church family, and my mates at the Penrith Community Mens’ Shed who make things bearable.

So what can we do about this? At present there is no cure for my illness but that doesn’t mean that the future is without hope for future sufferers of cancer. Doctors around the world are working tirelessly searching for a cure and who knows, it could be just around the corner. But what about NOW. For a cure to be found money is needed for research and trials and this is where YOU can help 1000’s of people who just like me have a very uncertain future. On Sunday September 18th 2016 Team Adlington ( my family, friends and I ) are participating in the Blackmores Sydney Running Festival 2016 to help raise much needed funds for the Lung Foundation Australia. You can make a donation by clicking on the below link, send us an email of encouragement or come on in and cheer us on to the end at the Opera House stairs. If we all do a little bit, together we can change lives.

Helpful links

The Crown Princess Mary Cancer Westmead

Lung Foundation Australia

Melanoma Institute Australia

Melanoma Patients Australia

Cancer Council Australia

Nepean Cancer Care Centre


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