When I first had a diagnosis of cancer I was – of course – terrified. I was scared of dying, of leaving my beautiful children behind, of leaving my husband, my parents, all of that. I wasn’t even 45 yet. I had no family history of breast cancer. I hadn’t lived a crazily ascetic marathon-running lifestyle, but I had a healthier lifestyle than most of my friends – and they hadn’t got cancer. The bastards.
And then, I picked myself up, did my time in the chemo unit (chemo: less fun than it sounds), had my mastectomy, relied on friends and family to support me and my little nuclear family through it all, got myself blasted on the radiotherapy unit, kept on working as much as I could, kept my head down and kept going.
It all stopped. I was fine.
I had a reconstruction – a big lump of ugly abdominal fat sculpted into an amazing new breast; 2 days of sitting in a side room heated to sauna level, another fine set of scars that to me were a line drawn under the whole horrible business.
But of course, I was wrong. Completely, utterly, stupidly wrong.