I can now stand up boldly

“Sweet Louise has inspired me not to allow the cancer to control my life. I want to live life to the full,” says Metua Ngamata-Rorani, a mum and grandma from Auckland.

Through her job as a social worker, Metua was used to advocating for others, but not for herself. Her manager at work convinced Metua to get a mammogram.

“I was asked to make a follow up appointment. I knew it was bad news when they told me to bring a support person,” says Metua. “They told me the breast cancer had spread to my bones.”

Metua had her breast removed and is still undergoing chemotherapy. Like many women, Metua has found the effects of ongoing treatment very challenging.

She told us: “I have cancer, but I still wanted to work, be a mum, a wife, a grandma – but how do I cope?”

“My Sweet Louise Support Coordinator, Nadine, first came to visit me in hospital when I was having chemotherapy,” adds Metua.

“Nadine is so warm, friendly and supportive. The Sweet Louise support meetings are welcoming and full of laughter. I find the meetings are healing and have inspired me to talk and share. Hearing the stories of the other ladies means I can now stand up boldly and share my story.

Metua with her grandson“I come from a culture where you don’t really talk about things. At first, I didn’t have the courage to speak out. Now I can ask questions and ask the doctors to explain things clearly to me. I speak up and remind them that English is my second language.

“I am thankful for the Sweet Louise vouchers. Since giving up work I can’t afford to go out for coffee, so the coffee vouchers are very much appreciated. They get me out.

“I also purchased some mastectomy wear, which is very comfortable – but so expensive! I couldn’t have afforded it without help from Sweet Louise.

“I feel like I have been given a second chance and now I want to make the most of my time. I have loved spending time with my daughter and grandchildren during this Covid lockdown. I enjoy every moment with them.

“Through this experience I have also learnt when to rest. And learnt when to put on my shoes and go for a walk. I love to walk under the trees.

“I so appreciate Sweet Louise and I’m forever grateful for the support I receive. Thank you so much for making a huge difference to me.”