Helping Petra Fight Cancer

My 33-year-old sister-in-law, Petra, is fighting an aggressive form of cancer.

On Tuesday 29th August, Petra, phoned to let me know that she had just had a biopsy taken from a lump in her groin. Petra was feeling healthy and well, and just enjoyed a weekend of sunshine with her husband and children, and on the Monday, she told her GP about a lump she could feel in her abdomen, and another in her groin.

On the Wednesday I was with Petra when she received a call from her GP to say that the biopsy results were in, and that it was a squamous cell carcinoma in her lymph node.

Petra had more scans done on the Thursday and was called to see the Doctor that night. The GP confirmed that Petra had Cancer in her lymph nodes, which was secondary to another Cancer which the doctor was yet to discover.

On Friday and Saturday Petra and Hamish packed up what they could, organised their children’s belongings, dropped their precious dog to us, and left early hours Sunday morning to the Czech Republic, where Petra is originally from. In Australia, Petra is not entitled to Medicare – even though she owns property here, works as a High School Teacher and pays tax. This means that Petra has to pay for all medical appointments and treatments that the rest of us would receive free in the public health system.

Returning to the Czech Republic allows Petra to receive free Medical Care in their public system, and also means that her husband Hamish can receive help with my niece Elleanor (5) and baby nephew, Arthur (8.5 months) whilst busy caring for Petra (Hamish’s family are in NZ). Petra’s family are supporting the 4 of them, providing them with housing, meals, a car, as well as tuition for Elleanor’s schooling whilst over there.

Unfortunately, Hamish has to relinquish his career here in Perth, whilst being in Czech with his family.

In this last month it has been confirmed that Petra has Cervical Cancer, which has metastasized to her lymph nodes. Petra went in for surgery to have these cancerous lymph nodes removed, and whilst under, the doctors discovered that there were more than originally thought, which has changed her treatment plan.

Petra was admitted to hospital on the 17th October to undergo her first round of an intensive combined chemo treatment. She will receive Chemo for 4 days straight in Hospital, then have 2 weeks at home to recover, before going in for another round. It is believed Petra will receive approximately 5 rounds of this Chemo. Once at a manageable size, Petra will receive radiation and also some internal radiation, and after this occurs the doctors will decide whether or not they will operate.

Petra and Hamish will not receive an income for the imminent future; have bills and a mortgage to pay, have had to sell their cars and are organising to rent their house out, all whilst fighting this aggressive cancer with all they have.

It is my aim to raise money in order to help Petra and Hamish keep their house in Heathridge, help them to be less dependent on Petra's family as well as lessen the financial burden which constantly takes up valuable thoughts and stress during their fight of this aggressive cancer.
Their children deserve to be able to return to their family home next year, once Petra beats this nasty disease, and Petra and Hamish deserve to not to worry excessively about their expenses piling up here in Perth.

Please help me in my quest to help out my family, Marnie
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Marnie Banks 
Kingsley WA
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