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Who's There?




By Diane Leopard

I stand and I stare

Lip hair, grey hair and wrinkles

Who’s that in the mirror

Looking back at me.


I stand and I stare,

The eyes are familiar

Smile, gentle and kind,

It must be my Grandma,

Or even my mum.


I stand and I stare,

But, that’s not my Grannie

Not even my mum

Is that the lady

I have become?


I stand and I stare,

But now I can see

Life lines, not wrinkles,

Hair silver not grey,

All of a sudden I recognise me!


In 2013 aged 49 I had treatment for breast cancer. Since then I have taken up photography and have created a series of non-clinical photographs to describe the emotional impact of a cancer diagnosis called ‘Focus on Emotions’. Some of which have been published at The Breast Cancer Art Project,  and on several other websites.

Shortly after my five year review I started writing poetry. Poetry has given me a way to express some of my innermost feeling, the words just flowed from my heart.

Both photography and poetry have been very therapeutic and healing for me, I found a creativity within me that I didn’t realise even existed.Poetry

Who’s There?’ is a poem of reflection and acceptance. The ageing process and every major life event both happy and sad changes us, both physically and emotionally, adding a new chapter to our book of life.

Reflecting on who are, who we have become, and learning to and accept ourselves no matter what we see is sometimes difficult. But, it can improve our general wellbeing and bring about contentment and happiness.  We are our own story of life and I am certainly enjoying writing mine.

I am the wellbeing therapist for the MS Society in North Staffordshire and  have delivered several wellbeing and self-care presentations for Breast Cancer Care, along with wellbeing and Mindfulness sessions in our local primary school (aged 3-12). I do breast awareness promotion at events for our local breast cancer support group Pink Sisters and write as a guest blogger.

I hope to encourage other cancer patients to consider expressing themselves through photography and poetry.

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Sonia Crane (not verified)

Wonderful poem. As my husband's carer, this poem reminds me of how I feel now....as his bone marrow cancer has returned. I have to remind myself in the midst of appointments (2 today in different hospitals), treatment and off days that I have to care for me too.

Diane Leopard (not verified)

Hi Sonia thank you for your lovely comments ❤️ I am delighted that you found my poem helpful