Battling stage four lymphoma cancer since the age of 24, Erneelya Elyana Emrizal reveals that she doesn’t see cancer as how others perceive it to be. “Medication and treatments such as chemotherapy help me get through the pain and suffering but it’s my faith in the Almighty that helps me cope with my condition. I see cancer as how others would look at the common cold or flu,” she says.
Like many other cancer patients, Elyana suffers from the side effects of chemotherapy. “It’s painful and it drains me out physically and mentally. It makes my skin feel like it’s on fire, my hair falls out in clumps and my weight fluctuates,” she shares. “Initially, I kept asking myself, how could I continue my showbiz career looking and feeling like this?” But the answer to that was simple as Elyana is deeply passionate about her career as a singer.
“Strange as it may sound, I never wanted to be a singer. If it wasn’t for my teacher who submitted a recording of me singing Niat (a ballad which received a lot of airplay when it was released in 2001) when I was 13 years old to a recording company, I doubt I’d have pursued this career.”
The lively and optimistic woman is expected to host a concert next month and star in several TV dramas and programmes that’ll be released around the same time. Her advice to those suffering from any type of illness is to “not just lay on your back and accept your fate. Go out and do something about it – and live your life to the fullest. Never let your illness define you and stop you from having a normal life.”
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