I’d first noticed a funny little lump on my chest in 2007. It was diagnosed as a popped ligament and my funny little lump stayed until December 2013 when I thought it wasn’t quite so little anymore. Another X-ray, ultrasound and CT scan revealed nothing sinister but I asked for referral to a consultant anyway because the lump had become uncomfortable.
I was in work when I had the phone call to tell me that everyone was surprised to find I had breast cancer. On what became known as ‘black Friday’ my surgeon took my hand and very gently told me that there would be no surgery as the cancer had already spread into my vertebrae.
I was diagnosed with adenocarcinoma with metastases; an unusual case in that my cancer was in my breast bone not in the tissue. I always have to be different!
Cancer left me feeling like I’d lost control over my life. The physical and emotional impact of the diagnosis meant I had to retire after working in the NHS for 34 years. Every twinge or headache made me think of the cancer spreading and my life was taken over by blood tests, scans and treatments with a diary full of medical appointments.