I was 33 years old when I was diagnosed with breast cancer. One day I discovered a lump in my left breast, however, as I had just had my second child I put it down to my body returning to normal after the pregnancy. I initially didn’t go to a doctor. However, after eight weeks it was clear that it wasn’t getting smaller or going away, in fact it was getting bigger. Soon after that whilst showering I discovered another lump under my left arm. I knew then that it was time to see a doctor. The doctor arranged for an appointment within two days at the Ulster Hospital, to get it looked at. After a biopsy, mammogram and ultrasound scan, the doctors confirmed that it was breast cancer.
At that point my main concern was “This cannot be happening now, I have two babies at home.” Tana, my son, was nearly three and Libby, my daughter, was only five months old. I didn’t know how my husband and I were going to get through this. My treatment program started the following week, with CT scans and the start of the chemotherapy. Shortly after this I met Noleen for the first time through a mutual friend. That was the first step in finding some of the strongest and most valuable support I got through this whole terrible experience.
Through Noleen and Pretty n Pink Breast Cancer Charity I have met women who know what I am going through. Who know what the tiredness feels like. Who know your fears and worries when your going the treatment. They’ve been there and many are still there. This amazing support network didn’t just stop at a sympathetic ear, or a word of comfort. Whether it was going to the Fate Awards, getting a make over or being treated to dinner, Pretty In Pink has given me confidence, excitement and glamour at a time when I needed it most.
After sixteen weeks of chemotherapy, a double mastectomy and radiotherapy, the only treatment left is another four months of Herceptin. My family and I are now looking towards a brighter future. Many people got me through this and will continue to help me through this. Noleen and Pretty n Pink are high on that list and for that thank her with all my heart.