The first Sunday of June is observed as the Cancer Survivors Day, an international event to raise awareness about cancer, sufferers and survivors.
This year the day falls on June 5 and the day is also an occasion for celebration of what survivors have gone through while fighting the disease.
For many, who hesitate to even talk about it, there are also survivors who want to share their story to educate and at the same time provide strength for others who are going through what they had experienced.
Oman Cancer Association takes the lead in the country in providing a platform for cancer survivors while being there for cancer patients.
A young man who was diagnosed with testicular cancer found that one of the best ways to tackle cancer is to go by the instinct, get diagnosis and then take treatment.
Saud al Junaidi, speaking at Oman Observer Podcast on Cancer Survivors Day, said: “I am very grateful to God that I went by my instinct that something was wrong and went on to seek medical attention. The diagnosis was a relief because it was early and now I know what was wrong with me and could move on to the next level and that is treatment.”
Early diagnosis is the key factor. This also meant learning more about the particular cancer. Saud had studied Bachelors in Economics and took Masters in Business from Australia. It was in 2020 amidst the fear of Covid-19 throughout the world when Saud received the diagnosis. There was no option to travel abroad either.
With the moral support of the family and step by step explanations from Oman Cancer Association, Saud moved onto treatment at Sultan Qaboos Hospital.
The pandemic period turned out to be the healing time for Saud. But he also learnt to reach out. He started his Instagram account named @ones.path where he posted matters of development and knowledge.
A post on his Instagram page stated, "Testicular cancer is the most common cancer in males 15-34 years old. One male is diagnosed every hour and one male dies every day from it. When detected early, 99 per cent of men diagnosed survive."
What amazed him was the support and followers he got, but most importantly the number of supporters from around the world who had gone through the same experience.
“Support is also important. I was blessed with the backing I received from complete strangers through social media,” he pointed out.
“It was an honour to be part of gatherings with Oman Cancer Association and fellow cancer survivors. It was a great platform to exchange stories and ideas as well as emphasise the support system to those who are battling cancer, May God cure them."
For Saud, it was a combination of faith, hope and trust that took him through the journey. And he made it a point to share his journey. Motor biking through Sifah Mountain he posted on his Instagram page - “Sometimes you need to live while you are alive.”
That is not all, in fact after overcoming the cancer, Saud put his efforts together to start the tourism company Infinite.
“I am proud of my country and all its potential,” he said.