In the second year of our marriage, my husband was diagnosed with Lymphoma; a cancer of the lymphatic system. At the time we were both 27 years of age.
He went through many rounds of chemo and radiotherapy and he endured a lot of gruesome tests, scans and consultations.
I’m not going to lie, it was the most frightening year of our life together. We drank a lot of hospital tea, Googled the hell out of his illness, scared ourselves witless with what Google returned, relocated to Wales to be with his family, tried to carry on with normal life whilst he went for chemo, went to the pub a lot and laughed when we felt like crying.
Twelve months later he got the all clear. He’s alive and well today and in 2013 he ran the London Marathon to raise money for the cancer charity he supports.
Watching someone I loved go through all this was crushing, horrid and awful. To this day I still don’t know how we managed to come out the other side.
It was a nightmare experience but my husband’s cancer was a great teacher:
1. Not all superheroes wear capes, masks and live inside comic books. They live among us. I am married to one. He will always be my superhero. You don’t need to look very far to see a real life superhero.
2. The importance of family and friendship. These people help you get through your darkest hours. They will give you hugs when you need them, offer their shoulder for you to cry on, make you laugh and join you on the dance floor when you need to go out and dance like crazy to 80s music. Appreciate your family and friends.
3. Love your life. It is so precious and can be turned upside down and blown inside out on a Sunday morning after seeing an Out of Hours GP.
Don’t waste it or let it drift. Grab your life with both hands!
4. The NHS is amazing! I can’t say enough about the wonderful care my husband received.
5. Good things do come from cancer. Hard to believe but for us it is true. Amongst the chaos and heartbreak with cancer there were a few silver linings. Cancer reshaped our life. We got to build a new life in beautiful Wales, my husband did a lot of charity fundraising during and after his illness, which gave him the skills to change his career, we both made some great friends and we had two children soon after he got the all clear.
Mad as it sounds but the idea for my debut novel, Instructions For Falling In Love Again, started back when our life was in turmoil. But, I wasn’t ready to become a writer back then so I locked it away at the back of my mind.
When he ran the London Marathon, to celebrate 10 years in remission, back came my memories from when he was sick and so did the idea for a novel. My husband started carrying round with him a little red notebook to record his training schedule, leaving us all instructions on the fridge and creating wall planners to get us all organised.
Our cancer story is very different to the one featured in my book. However I have used some of the things from my own experience with cancer to help create a story; friendship, red notebooks, instructions, a superhero, Wales and true love 💕
6. It is important to give something back. I am hoping to make a donation to a cancer charity with some of the proceeds from my book. I’m not expecting a huge take-up from my book but a small donation will still mean a lot to me. This will be my way of giving something back. ❤️
Thanks for reading my post.
My husband’s London Marathon top ❤️