Despite having two operations and coping with her mother dying in between, breast cancer survivor celebrates completing almost an entire year of treatment at her daughter's wedding

  • Cancer sufferer Gill required two operations, radiotherapy and chemotherapy
  • During her treatment, Gill also had to cope with the death of her mother
  • Regular phone calls from a charity offered much-needed emotional support throughout her treatment
  • Having completed her radiotherapy and chemotherapy, Gill celebrated by attending her daughter's wedding

Written by Callum Patterson for DonateToday

PUBLISHED: 13:49, 22nd Sep 2017 | UPDATED: 14:12, 3rd Oct 2017

Getting Through Each Day

After her treatment, Gill attended her daughter Charlotte's wedding

After having a mammogram, Gill thought nothing of being recalled for a further appointment. ‘I skipped along expecting to be one of the four in five recalled women who are okay,’ she recalls, speaking to the website of Tenovus Cancer Care – a charity that provides mobile treatment; year-round phone support and opportunities for socialisation to cancer sufferers in Wales.

‘Half an hour later,’ she remembers, ‘I walked out, lent against the railings and whispered to myself “I have breast cancer.”’

Two weeks later, Gill had an operation to remove the cancerous tumour in her breast. Unfortunately, this operation revealed she also had cancerous cells in her left sentinel lymph gland so a second operation was required.

To add to the trying times that Gill was already facing, her mother passed away between her two operations.

Following her second operation, Gill required radiotherapy and a course of chemotherapy which, she says, took up much of her time. ‘I didn’t really have time to think of anything other than getting through each day,’ she remembers. 

"Through Tenovus Cancer Care, I was able to get some emotional support."

Gill

Lucky

Fortunately, the cancer sufferer was able to access support from a charity operating nationwide across Wales. 

‘Throughout my treatment,’ Gill recalls, ‘I was lucky enough to have regular phone calls from Jane on the Tenovus Cancer Care Support Line. Her gentle voice and understanding comments were a lifeline, sometimes just at the right time.’

Gill describes the support she received via the Tenovus Cancer Care Support Line as 'a lifeline'

Despite successfully reaching the end of her treatment, Gill admits that her life did not simply go straight back to normal. ‘My emotions were more or less on hold so afterwards, I struggled,’ she recalls, ‘But through Tenovus Cancer Care, I was able to get some emotional support.

‘It’s really helped get rid of anxious thoughts and meant I’ve been able to talk openly about my feelings,’ she continues. ‘It’s been a huge help to me and has taken the pressure off family and friends.’

Support

Gill has a message of hope and support for any people out there in a similar situation to the one she found herself in: ‘The support given to me by Tenovus Cancer Care was so important,’ she says. 

‘Overall from diagnosis to completion of my medical treatment,’ she continues, ‘The quality of care I have received has been second to none and I have every confidence that yours will be too.’ 

Around 10 months after her original diagnosis, Gill’s cancer treatment came to an end, and she certainly celebrated in style: at her daughter Charlotte’s wedding! 

Please note that names may have been changed to protect the privacy of those involved. Images are used for illustrative purposes only and, unless specified, persons included in images are posed models, not the persons mentioned in the article.