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Scared to Move to Another Area

JanJan63's picture
Posts: 2482
Joined: Sep 2014

My husband is retiring in a couple of months. He'd love to move some where warmer or just have a fresh start. I'm terrified of moving somewhere where I won't get the same level of treatment. We live in Canada so we have healthcare coverage but if we were to move to somewhere south I wouldn't be covered. And even in Canada there's different levels of care. My friend waited 8 months for a colonoscopy and her doctor believed she had cancer. She ended up having Crohn's but that's a long wait. They live in the Okanogan Valley in BC. I'm told by the company that supplies my ostomy products that in BC and Ontario the provincial governments covers much less of the cost of the products.

We live half an hour outside of the city where the cancer clinic is. Even that's a pain in the rear to have to get to. It's on the opposite side of the city from us and it takes almost an hour to get there and then the parking is expensive, if you can get a spot.

Does anyone else have this issue? Fear of moving anywhere? I'm even afraid to go on a trip.





Posts: 72
Joined: Mar 2015

Hi Jan,

I totally get you. Once you get used to the docs, clinics, processes, etc. moving would be scary.  I get care through the Veteran's Administration system due to a 40 year old issue that occurred while I was in the military.  When my wife was alive we moved several times mostly for jobs so I've been through at least 7 different V.A.'s in different parts of the country.  Most of them were highly bureacratic, rigid, and inflexible about what they would, and wouldn't do regarding care.  

I moved to Los Angeles about 8 years ago for a job.  The V.A. hospital here is used as a teaching hospital for UCLA's medical school. It's by far the best equipped of any V.A. and several regular hospitals that I've ever walked into.  It's not perfect but I consider myself lucky that I was here when I was first diagnosed.

I'd never had a problem moving and actually enjoyed the changes in scenery.  But that was before the big C and that puts things in a different perspective.  While I have that hanging over my head I wouldn't move.  Plus I have a surgeon I trust (she's an Associate Professor of Surgery at the UCLA medical school) and that's a relationship I would have a lot of difficulty moving away from.


John23's picture
Posts: 2140
Joined: Jan 2007


They say that moving is one of the most traumatic experiences to have to go through. For some, it's easier to adapt to a major change than others, but it takes a toll anyway.

In our cancer populous case, it involves not only losing close touch with friends, relationships, and the familiarity of geographic area and conveniences, but having to change medical care providers as well. It's traumatic, make no mistake.

Changing jobs or retiring can be very traumatic also, and the combination of both at the same time can seriously be health threatening.

You should sit down with your mate and discuss your concerns in depth. If you can afford to, rent (or buy) an RV (camper) to travel to a new area and spend a few weeks poking around. Just the experience of it can change and renew a marriage! It could provide a better idea of what to expect from a major change without actually making the change permanent.

We lived in an motor home for 1.5 years down here in Florida before deciding to stay. It ended up with having more and better facilities where we finally choose to stay, than what we had in "the country" up north. A major move was made a whole lot less traumatic with the feeling of not being tied to an area we knew nothing about.

Just a thought.....

But the bottom line? Discuss your concerns in depth. If a move isn't what -you- want, make it known and stick to it.

Life for us is short enough without another hassle to weigh us down. Our loved ones should understand that. I can clearly understand and appreciate anxiety and the desire to "run away" from problems, but your mate isn't going to "run away" from problems any easier than you can.

Don't be afraid to state -your- needs. You are #1.

Be well,



Trubrit's picture
Posts: 5428
Joined: Jan 2013

If you can afford to, rent (or buy) an RV (camper) to travel to a new area and spend a few weeks poking around.

What a great idea, John.  If I am ever faced with a move, I would definitely do this. 


Posts: 2
Joined: Jun 2016

i am a stage 3b colon Cancer survivor. I will be 3 years out from completion of chemo and radiation Treatments. Upon completion

I decided to really evaluate the life given back to me.sold the house I lived in for 32 yrs and  I bought a condo in New Hampshire a place I have gone to many many times over the last 25 years and always made me feel good.it is so very calm and peaceful people seem to just plain be less hipped up and enjoy the simple things in life. It is 2 1/2 hours from where I have always lived my life so visits and a hotel are still options to see friends etc.

i have gone up every 2 wks or so over the last couple years and am moving there permanently on 6-21.

all my records have been walked in to new oncologist. This is the scarey part as I know she will quickly take me back to a very dark and uncertain time in my life First visit on 6-22.New doctors are a fear for sure. This is the part that definitely concerns me. I have my current oncologist still in place til I meet and see if the connection is right with new doctor. moving is stressful for sure I try to just take things a step at a time..

JanJan63's picture
Posts: 2482
Joined: Sep 2014

Thanks for the suggestion John. It would be very difficult for us to do that due to me still working, us having three dogs and my horse. I think we're going to have to agree on him going off and doing what he wants by himself for a couple of months a year. He's young to be retiring at 55 but we can't afford for neither of us to work as we're still trying to get sorted out from the financial hit of me not working for a couple of years. I lost the small business I had due to the cancer and had no income at all such as medical coverage or unemployment. I wouldn't mind moving elsewhere in our province but, as you mentioned, I also don't want to be away from my firends and support people. I'd love to move to somewhere like Kentucky. We could buy a gorgeous horse farm for what we'd pay for a house in the city here. We used to have an acreage but now live in town and I have to drive to see my horse and I miss him so much. He's a big puppy dog and helps to bring me up when I'm feeling down. He's the horse that came to see me in the ICU when I had the blood clot as some of you may remember. I wish I could look out my window and see him there. Take carrots out to him whenever I feel like it. All that. Now I have to drive there and there's a totally annoying woman who lives in a house on the place and she always comes out when we're there and talks about herself and her horse until I want to scream. I know she's lonely but this is my time to see my horse and she can see hers anytime. Bugger off.


beaumontdave's picture
Posts: 1135
Joined: Aug 2013

I wish I had some answers for you, Jan. When Cindy and I were doing chemo[separately, but together always] we met lots of Snowbirds who had their treatment and doctor visits all figured out for the 4 or 5 months they were down in SoCal. But they were US citizens, which made things much easier for them. What do expatriated Canadians do for care in the states? They must do something, pay cash? Go back for big stuff? Schedule everything for summer months. Find out your options, Kentucky is beautiful country.................................Dave

JanJan63's picture
Posts: 2482
Joined: Sep 2014

I know of people who come back every once in a while and then don't lose their health care coverage. It would be dificult to arrange it for those like us who have to come back on a regular basis. If it weren't for having a horse I could go back and forth but I'll never give him up. And I still have to work so I can't go back and forth anyway.

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