Cameron Mathison On How His Cancer Diagnosis Changed Him:
by Alyssa Croezen
Our good friend Cameron Mathison has always been fit, going above and beyond to live his best healthy lifestyle. So, fans were quite shocked to learn that he was suddenly diagnosed with a rare form of cancer just three weeks before his 50th birthday.
Thankfully, after months of treatment, he’s cancer-free.
After inviting ET Canada’s Sangita Patel into his Los Angeles home, Canadian-born Mathison admits that his emotions are still very raw when thinking back about the moment he received the initial call from his doctor.
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“He said we got the test results back and your gut looks fine. He said that they did find a tumour on my right kidney,” the Entertainment Tonight host shares while being visibly emotional.
“It’s funny I’ve told this story so many times but the tough part is going back there mentally and remembering what that felt like,” adds Mathison.
However, at the time, the 50-year-old was unaware that it was 100 per cent renal cell carcinoma, a.k.a. kidney cancer. But, when he did find out the diagnosis, the former “All My Children” star says he called his wife Vanessa “immediately.”
“It felt like time stood still,” Vanessa reveals. “You know when you hear you know your husband or your wife found a tumour in their body. It’s that moment… it just didn’t seem real.”
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After setting a plan in place to battle the illness, Cameron and Vanessa tearfully recall telling their two children, Lucas and Leila, about their dad’s condition.
“Leila got very emotional,” Vanessa shares. “Lucas just got really quiet. There was a lot of quiet. It was very quiet in the room.”
Cameron underwent the highly specialized procedure in September to remove a tumour roughly the size of a golfball – along with a part of his kidney.
His two children recall what it was like to see their dad come out of surgery.
“I had never seen him like so vulnerable before and it was weird cause he’s always been like my hero kind of. And it was just weird cause he kind of got beaten down,” Leila, 13, says. “But after he recovered he was kind of… he was stronger after that. And he was more of my hero.”
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Nearly three months post-surgery, Mathison shares if this terrifying incident has changed him in any way.
“I try to remember how fragile life is every day,” he candidly shares.
“Basically, you just never know. That’s very inspiring for me to make the most of it. To be present, to be kind, to be helpful. To try and use my story to benefit others as far as being your best advocate for your own health. And obviously just to steal every moment I can with my kids and friends and family.”
Check out our interview with the Mathison family above.
Alyssa Croezen | Novemb