In January 2016, aged just 30, I was diagnosed with non-genetic stage four ovarian cancer. There is no stage five. My cancer was terminal.
I was just 30 years old, married to my soul mate Ewan and had been trying to start a family when I experienced an ectopic pregnancy caused by the ovarian tumours and emergency surgery due to internal bleeding caused when my fallopian tube ruptured.
Suddenly, everything I had identified as ‘me’ came to a stand still. In one moment, after months of pain, tests and assurances that it was “nothing to worry about”, my worst fears had been realised. I was just 30 years old and I was dying.
I had six double doses of chemotherapy and major surgery during which five of my organs were completely removed and four others partically removed...it was the largest operation they ahd ever performed on a stage four cancer patient...I was left with a colostomy bag, no spleen (which has caused me to have a suppressed immune system) and, of course, I had a hysterectomy which means my dream of becoming a mum will now never be realised.
My cancer went into remission for a while during which time I started teaching children and adults yoga and I even wrote a book to help other people with stage four cancer Then, suddenly, in January 2018, I was told that my cancer is back.
Whilst I should have been celebrating Christmas and New Year with my loved ones making precious memories, I was instead in hospital having 2.5 litres of cancerous fluid drained from my lungs....a brutal and painful experience.
My latest scans show tumours on my right lung and next to my left kidney. I also have a mass growing in my abdomen.
I’m now only 32 years old and I have been told I have only months left to live.
I’m done with the poor prognosis offered to my by conventional medicine in the UK.
I don’t want to keep having my body bombarded with chemotherapy drugs that I‘m told will only extend my life by two months, at the possible expense of months in hospital away from my loved ones and doing the things I love. Most of all I don’t want my sister’s four young children to have to see me in hospital again...let alone deal with the news of me passing.
I still have a lot of living to do!
I want the opportunity to make memories and laugh with my wonderful husband; to run; to walk in the woods or on the beach; to have happy adventures; to go on movie nights, cinema dates or theatre trips; to have weekends away and days out; to see my friends and play with the many children in my life; and, above all, to see my loving family....I want what everyone else wants...I want a life...the glorious, amazing opportunity to live another day free from pain and worry and fear that this coutdoor be it.
So!!...I want to raise money to enable me to get the drug ‘Avastin’ privately. This may (fingers and toes crossed) extend my life without reducing it’s quality!... this treatment costs £3000 every three weeks!... but each extra day with my family is priceless! I had this drug when I was first diagnosed so I know it works for me - however I have now received the maximum amount I can through the nhs.
I will blog about the treatment I receive and give honest and open feedback about what is working for me and what isn’t. In a sense, I will be using my background as a PhD researcher to make myself into a mini research study (albeit a single case study!)
Please support my endeavours and help me to not only live a longer and healthier life but also (and perhaps more importantly) shed light on the treatments available to people with ‘terminal’ cancer, in the same honest and unfiltered way that I share everything.
Me and my loved ones thank you from the bottoms of our hearts.
Love and Light, Fi xxx
- Deborah Offer
- Keith Harding
- Alvaro Acosta
- E Porter
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