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Meet Saffron.

Following her diagnosis, Saffron had her chemotherapy treatment on our Mobile Support Unit.

I was referred for a mammogram within a week of finding a lump in my breast. When I returned for what I thought would be the results I had an ultrasound and six biopsies from around the breast and under my arm. The results confirmed I had breast cancer; a four centimeter tumor with my lymph nodes affected.

My family were devastated. My husband took some time to get his head around it but he’s been brilliant with me and I feel incredibly lucky to have his support. I was heartbroken having to tell my children about the diagnosis but they were great too.

It was important for me to tell my children because they have access to computers and an internet search can make things sound so much bigger. My son has googled the treatments and side effects, keen to check that I’m okay. He would sit with me on the sofa but my daughter just tells me to get on with it, she’s got my personality.

Being able to have chemotherapy treatment on Tenovus Cancer Care’s Mobile Support Unit was absolutely brilliant. I was a little nervous and I didn’t know what to expect but everyone I met was amazing. It’s perfect when you aren’t feeling your best because you can drive up to the entrance and walk straight in. I’ve always called it the party bus.

Like most women I found the thought of losing my hair quite scary so I picked up a wig before I started the chemotherapy treatment. It was ready when I needed it and I didn’t have to go into the shop feeling self-conscious. The worst thing for me was the annoyance of having hair all around the house, I didn’t realise just how much hair I had!

The operation was fine but I really wasn’t prepared for the pain that came with having my lymph nodes removed. It was as if my arm was attached at the elbow and I needed to be able to lift it above my head for radiotherapy treatment. The tiniest movement was so painful and I’ve needed to have physiotherapy since.

Wearing a prosthesis a little strange at first but you get used to it. I’ve caught myself answering the door without it and thought I must have looked odd! My confidence will come back in time but I plan to have a reconstruction because I’m too young to be like this. It’s the clothes more than anything; finding affordable swimwear is impossible.

When I was going through my treatment I was the youngest by a mile and never saw anyone my own age. I don’t think young people realise that you can be affected by breast cancer at their age, I certainly didn’t.

Because my breast cancer was estrogen fed and my levels have been high, I’ll need my ovaries taken out next. It will help to ‘prolong my life’ which is a terrifying thing to hear after going through cancer treatment but I know it’s important. I’d rather know that I did everything I could to reduce the risk of another diagnosis.

I’ve always checked for lumps and when I found my lump I kept asking myself why I hadn’t felt it before. I was annoyed because I hadn’t taken the pill to avoid breast cancer and I’d always been careful about which deodorants I used; typical then that I was diagnosed.

Would you like to support people like Saffron?

If you or someone you love has been affected by cancer, our free Support Line is there for you. Just call 0808 808 1010