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Sonali Bendre’s powerful post on battling cancer: Post chemo, post surgery, even laughing hurts

In a long post on Instagram, Sonali Bendre talks about how, in the past couple of months, she has had her share of good and bad days, with chemotherapy and surgery ravaging her body.

bollywood Updated: Oct 09, 2018 15:13 IST
Nivedita Mishra
Edited by Nivedita Mishra
Hindustan Times
Sonali Bendre,Sonali Bendre health,Sonali Bendre cancer
Sonali Bendre and her fight against cancer: Now the actor has detailed it.(Instagram)

In all the time after actor Sonali Bendre was diagnosed with high grade cancer that had metastised, she has always presented a brave front. She has given courage to many more to face the vicissitude of life with fortitude and courage. Now, perhaps for the first time, she has written about what it took to battle with the disease.

In a long post she put up on Instagram Sonali talks how in the past couple of months, she has had her share of good and bad days, times when even lifting a finger seemed like an arduous task. “There have been days when I’ve been so exhausted and in so much pain that even lifting a finger hurt,” she writes.

View this post on Instagram

"I knew that if I allowed fear to overtake me, my journey was doomed. Fear, to a great extent, is born of a story we tell ourselves, and so I chose to tell myself a different story from the one women are told. I decided I was safe. I was strong. I was brave. Nothing could vanquish me." – Cheryl Strayed, Wild. Over the past couple of months, I have had good days and bad ones. There have been days when I’ve been so exhausted and in so much pain that even lifting a finger hurt. I feel like sometimes it’s a cycle… one that starts off with physical pain and leads to mental and emotional pain. The bad days have been many… Post chemo, post-surgery and the like… where even just laughing hurts. Sometimes it felt like it took everything I’ve had to push past it… a minute to minute battle with myself. I got through it knowing that even though I was fighting a long drawn out, draining battle… it was one that was worth the fight. It’s important to remember that we’re allowed to have those bad days. Forcing yourself to be happy and cheerful all the time serves no purpose. Who are we being fake and putting on an act for? I allowed myself to cry, to feel the pain, to indulge in self-pity… for a short while. Only you know what you’re going through and it is fine to accept it. Emotions aren’t wrong. Feeling negative emotions isn’t wrong. But after a point, identify it, recognize it and refuse to let it control your life. It takes an immense amount of self-care to get out of that zone. Sleep always helps, or having my favourite smoothie after chemo, or just talking to my son. For now, as my treatment continues… my visual focus remains to just get better and get back home. It’s yet another test… Student all my life… Learning all my life… #OneDayAtATime

A post shared by Sonali Bendre (@iamsonalibendre) on

She goes on to say how what would start of as physical pain would soon lead to mental and emotional pain. “I feel like sometimes it’s a cycle… one that starts off with physical pain and leads to mental and emotional pain.” For the first time perhaps, she informs that she has had to go through chemotherapy as well as surgery. “The bad days have been many... Post chemo, post-surgery and the like... where even just laughing hurts.”

Sonali then goes on to say how it was fine to face bad days and that she did not feel the need to fake being happy and cheerful and that she allowed herself to cry and to indulge in self pity. “It’s important to remember that we’re allowed to have those bad days. Forcing yourself to be happy and cheerful all the time serves no purpose. Who are we being fake and putting on an act for? I allowed myself to cry, to feel the pain, to indulge in self-pity... for a short while.”

Sonali Bendre and husband Goldie Behl with Rishi Kapoor and Neetu Kapoor.

However, she also adds that one does have to pull oneself up from the pit of self pity and pick up the threads of life. “Emotions aren’t wrong. Feeling negative emotions isn’t wrong. But after a point, identify it, recognize it and refuse to let it control your life.”

It may be recalled that in July this year, Sonali told the world that she had been diagnosed with high grade cancer that had metastised. In the months that followed, she took us through the various stages of her treatment — going bald, missing Ganesh Chaturthi, posing with girl pals, etc.

Sonali Bendre with Anupam Kher in New York.

Read Sonali Bendre’s complete post here:

Over the past couple of months, I have had good days and bad ones. There have been days when I’ve been so exhausted and in so much pain that even lifting a finger hurt. I feel like sometimes it’s a cycle… one that starts off with physical pain and leads to mental and emotional pain. The bad days have been many… Post chemo, post-surgery and the like… where even just laughing hurts.

Sometimes it felt like it took everything I’ve had to push past it… a minute to minute battle with myself. I got through it knowing that even though I was fighting a long drawn out, draining battle… it was one that was worth the fight.

It’s important to remember that we’re allowed to have those bad days. Forcing yourself to be happy and cheerful all the time serves no purpose. Who are we being fake and putting on an act for?

I allowed myself to cry, to feel the pain, to indulge in self-pity… for a short while. Only you know what you’re going through and it is fine to accept it. Emotions aren’t wrong. Feeling negative emotions isn’t wrong. But after a point, identify it, recognize it and refuse to let it control your life.

It takes an immense amount of self-care to get out of that zone. Sleep always helps, or having my favourite smoothie after chemo, or just talking to my son. For now, as my treatment continues… my visual focus remains to just get better and get back home.

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First Published: Oct 09, 2018 14:49 IST