N.S. cancer patient overwhelmed, grateful for support after video goes viral

A young Nova Scotia mother, and cancer patient is feeling overwhelmed and grateful with the support she’s received after a video she posted to social media went viral.

In the video, 33-year-old Inez Rudderham, challenges Premier Stephen McNeil about the healthcare crisis in Nova Scotia. In less than 24 hours, her video went viral and created a huge conversation online.

Rudderham says she made multiple doctors' visits when she thought something was wrong, but she was sent home each time.

It was last May when Rudderham visited an emergency room in Windsor, N.S. where a doctor immediately suspected something was seriously wrong.

“I didn’t react until I walked out of the hospital and I felt the sun on my face, and I just broke,” said Rudderham. “It was just this overwhelming rush of emotion, of validation, and fear and anger.” 

Rudderham ended up requiring 31 rounds of radiation, and two of chemotherapy.

Unable to work, she and her former partner had to sell their home. The family has to be out of the home by May and is still unsure where they will live next.

Rudderham says her anger was triggered, when the ‘sold’ sign went up in her yard.

“And in that moment, the rush of emotion just took over and I was angry,” said Rudderham.

Rudderham has documented her cancer battle through vlogging, a form of blogging using videos, since she was diagnosed. That’s where she posted an open letter to the Premier about the state of Nova Scotia’s healthcare. A video, she still has a hard time re-watching.

“I thought about deleting it at around, 75,000 views, and now it’s at over 4-million,” said Rudderham. “I think, because I was embarrassed that it had been reaching the audience that it had.”

The Nova Scotia Premier did respond publicly to the viral video, and top officials say a face-to-face meeting is being planned for sometime in May.

In the meantime, Rudderham says she is overwhelmed with the support of strangers who have reached out online, or approached her on the street.

She believes her cancer has become an unexpected gift.

“Human beings are incredicle, and that you’re never truly alone,” said Rudderman as she held back tears. “That there’s always support out there and that, even the smallest of individuals can make an impact.”

Rudderham believes she is in remission, and hopes to confirm this in the next couple of weeks. She has finished all of her medications, except for hormone-therapy, which she’ll have to take for the rest of her life.

A GoFundMe page that was created for Rudderham to help with expenses has already raised $21,000.

If you would like to donate to Rudderham and her family, you can visit the GoFundMe page at https://ca.gofundme.com/inez-has-cancer

With files from CTV Atlantic’s Bruce Frisko