The fault in my stars – Vicky’s story, “the reality”
I remember feeling the lump one day in 2013, Rich said “it was just Gristle” but as we sat waiting for the mammogram, I knew it wasn’t. I went through the same process thousands have before me and started my treatment. 4 operations later and 6 treatments of chemotherapy made me determined to try and live the best possible life I could. I always thought about growing old with Rich but for some reason I always knew I would never see my 50th and the cancer would return.
I got on with life, even got a new job and started to become a school business manager. I loved working in schools, especially listening to the sound of happy children at playtime and our jack bringing the morning register to me.
After securing my new job at Fangfoss I went on holiday with our friends, enjoying life. I thought I had sciatica from the long drive home so went to the doctors.
It was September 2017 when I remember getting the call in the school car park, ‘it was back”, this time in my bones, I drove to Steph’s in tears. My three years of remission were over!
I knew bone mets could not be cured and it was now a case of management. It made me even more determined to try and life my best possible life,
I felt so lucky to be given the new wonder drug ‘IBRANCE’ which was giving patients two years of relative normality. I treasured every month they told me that my bloods were good enough to have another dose, knowing I was heading for the end of the cliff at some point. I never really got into the cancer groups or wallowed in self-pity, I enjoyed meeting friends, socialising (albeit limited) and looking after my family.
The day came ….. “we will need to try something else now Vicky, your tumour markers are up”. I was so lucky to have my cancer buddy Claire to talk things through I promised that we were ‘doing this together’ but her fight finished before mine. I was so proud of Mathew; I know he will help Rich. I never really got stared on further treatments they always seem to fail after the first two or three treatments and I knew what was happening, More chemo and radiotherapy didn’t help, I was too tired to go on. I tried my best to prepare for the inevitable. I couldn’t do anything to change what had happened since the day I discovered that lump, this was the “fault on my stars”.
Anyway, I did get some positives out of the last 7 years of living with cancer.
It made me realise what is important in life, it made me a better person, to cherish those close to me. Not many people realised what I (we) were going through the past 7 years as I tried to enjoy life, smiling and laughing. I learnt that normality is precious and growing old is an honour. No amount of money can buy health or happiness.
I wanted to write this as you will know others in my position and be worried, however we don’t all follow the same path, there are success stories and survivors, so stay positive. All I ask is that your life your best life , if you’re not happy then do something about it and cherish every minute you have with the ones you love.
- Will Dyrdal
- Phillip Watson
- Karen Douglas
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