Life for myself and family turned into a whirlwind on the 31st December 2020 when my mum was diagnosed with aggressive non-hodgkin’s lymphoma. The prognosis without treatment was not a happy ending! We were all in shock and my mum was taken by surprise without a moments notice as it came on suddenly, without warning sending her to hospital when on that day she was planning to go on a summer camping trip with my dad. The camping trip was diverted and that was a god send. It’s as though from the very start my mum was protected, guided and strengthened with every step for what was going to be the biggest fight of her life for the next 7 months.
Numb, shocked and saddened are some of the words that provide a tiny glimpse of how we all felt. Broken, lost, helpless, scared and grief stricken. None of us could have possibly imagined what we were going to witness with our own eyes. The moments of deep sorrow, painfilled concerns, questions, the whys and the how’s we all pulled together to support her like her life depended on it, and it did!!!!
My mum started intensive chemotherapy as a 73 year old for the first time in her life! Our family was not one to have experienced such a journey, watching and supporting someone so ever close to us being poked and prodded, treated with medication that was both poison and a trigger for her body to start the big fight! We were all standing strong with her, when alone we were weak and scared. All of our vulnerabilities were touched from one moment to the next.
As soon as the battle started her new name was “”Wonder Woman””, she was and still is absolutely amazing! I have no doubt that in her quiet moments when she was alone her thoughts would have taken her to desperate places. Mum was extremely determined after the initial shock and overwhelming sadness to begin the fight. I couldn’t believe how strong she was, not even giving into any type of negativity, not reading anyone’s “sorry messages” on her phone. THE only people she wanted around her were her 4 daughter’s and my dad.
There were different types of chemotherapy used, some treatments she went home with and others that could only be given in hospital over several days. The specialist’s and nurses were all outstanding, they were the ones on the forefront focused and strong to make sure they gave her every chance to continue living life. Each of us daughters and dad were standing strong and united, strategizing to ensure mum was never alone in the hospital.
There were some scares amidst the treatment when we were told the cancer had spread to her spinal fluid. However as quick as that came to light is as quick as it was gone after specific treatment was designed to eradicate it. The treatment was effective and it provided a sigh of relief to continue the focus on the rest of her body that was being attacked. Mum kept with the treatment like a trooper! After the last chemotherapy which was by far the most hard hitting on her body she had a week at home and then all of a sudden her body started showing signs of something being very wrong. After a lot of investigation it was found that her pik line was infected, they removed the pic line and then started a whole new regime of treatments to eliminate infection from her body, her body that had been through so much already. Once again we were all fighting strong with her, quietly by ourselves scared, hoping for the war to be won.
Happy to say that we all left the hospital together with her when she was better, ready to go home and start recovery. She had six weeks of recovery before the dreaded day being a Pet Scan that would tell the specialist what the outcome would be.
THE CANCER WAS ALL GONE!
No lymphoma anywhere to be found!!!!!!!
While my mum is still recovering, we are celebrating a massive win to what was the biggest fight of all of our lives. My mum is my inspiration, whenever I am dealing with something anxiety provoking, scary or unknown, I think of my mum and say to myself, “”if mum could go through that big war, I can do anything””!!!!
Love you Mum with all my heart and I am so happy you are still with us 🙂 Xxxxxxx