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The Last Word With Matt Cooper

Sarah O'Neill On Battling Cancer While Doing The Leaving Cert

Ahead of tomorrow's National Day of Dancing for Dare To Care, we've been hearing people's personal s...
Sarah Stacey
Sarah Stacey

5:06 PM - 29 Apr 2019



The Last Word With Matt Cooper

Sarah O'Neill On Battling Cancer While Doing The Leaving Cert

Sarah Stacey
Sarah Stacey

5:06 PM - 29 Apr 2019

Listen to this episode



Ahead of tomorrow's National Day of Dancing for Dare To Care, we've been hearing people's personal stories of going through cancer.

Sarah O'Neill was 17 years old when she was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma nearly five years ago.

She started experiencing chest pain, which her doctor put down to a pulled muscle. However, one night she found herself unable to breathe and was admitted to hospital, where she stayed for six weeks.

An x-ray confirmed that Sarah had a tumour in her chest, and she was diagnosed with cancer.

Her treatment consisted of chemo, surgery and radiotherapy, and lasted for a year.

During this time she sat her Leaving Cert. She says she knew that if she didn't do it that year, she wouldn't have gone back to do it, and describes it as "one of the most stressful things I've ever done".

But despite the stress involved, doing exams provided a distraction from her illness: "The Leaving Cert was my normal."

Fortunately, Sarah was given the all-clear and is now finishing a degree in Health and Society at DCU.

She says she is grateful for everyday things, such as being able to go to college.

"I just enjoy every day. I don't take anything for granted."

If you want to support the Irish Cancer Society, you can donate online at cancer.ie/dance or DONATE BY TEXT: Text DARE to 50300 to donate €4

Sarah O'Neill On Battling Cancer While Doing The Leaving Cert

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Cancer Dare To Care Sarah O'Neill

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