Making My Mark

As most people should know, I’ve been trying my best with the amount of energy and time I have to raise awareness around bowel cancer in younger people, to make people aware that even though it’s unlikely, it’s not impossible and if the symptoms continue after being brushed off and diagnosed with IBS, it’s important to push for a test or scan at the doctors so it doesn’t progress further. Recently, I’ve also been offered help to raise awareness by appearing in the Daily Express tomorrow! I’m beyond excited to share my story nationwide and hopefully make a difference in some people’s lives, whether it’s giving them the confidence to question doctors about symptoms or if it reaches out to other young people who can compare their experience to mine.

Over the next few weeks, I’m wanting to do a lot more in terms of writing about my continued day-to-day life with my colostomy, a sort-of tour video of the TYA unit at Clatterbridge and other things that focus more on the living with cancer side as well as posting regular updates too.

This past week I’ve ventured out a fair bit (after having the odd one or two sick days), having a date night at the cinemas watching The BFG and going out into town on Saturday night for two of my sisters birthdays (ironically, the two who have also had cancer). I’ve fully enjoyed it, having the cinema night as an easy and calm outing and the night out being an event I can get my hair and make up done and spend the night dancing and having a laugh with my sisters who I don’t nearly spend enough time with, of course I couldn’t drink, leaving me to be the only one sober but I was fine with just pepsi (it made it a cheap night anyway!).

14034871_1757138811228544_8415703009955373508_nI’m now looking forward to my cousins fancy dress party this weekend, were I will be dressing as Harley Quinn as usual (When do I ever go fancy dress as anyone else?) and then in two weeks I have a week away with my boyfriend for his birthday! Sadly, it’s not abroad but it is in a Haven park that I went to twice when I was younger and absolutely loved it so hopefully it’ll give me the same happy memories. I’ll be making one of my usual holiday videos there that I enjoy making and will be posting it on here and my youtube (which was my travelling/adventures account) with the two other travel videos. We have our own private-hire caravan and I couldn’t be more made up with it, it’s beautiful and right next to the beach!

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Tomorrow I have a moderately busy day before round 5 of chemo on Wednesday with my mum and Paul again. I’ll then be one round away from the dreaded scan and I know that week leading up to my scan is going to be the most horrific waiting game I’ll have ever had to do. I really am truly hoping that my tumours have shrunk, I don’t know how I’d feel if the chemo hasn’t been working or how it would affect my positivity which has been wavering lately anyway. Till then however, I’m just going to continue trying to live my life and ignore the black cloud that is Cancer lingering over my head.

Although not much has been said to update my cancer situation in this blog post, I really felt like I needed to write it so everyone is aware of the piece in the Daily Express tomorrow. I hope as many people as possible pick it up, but if not, I’ll probably upload it on my page anyway! Without repeating myself too much, I am really excited to get my story even more out there and I hope it’ll help me get my blog further and connect with a much larger audience. As usual, thank you for reading my blog and the continued support everyone has been giving me, it’s more than I could have ever imagined!

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5 Comments Add yours

  1. Doug says:

    You are so great! Sure…full of normal emotions, but setting such a great example of living through cancer. It is inspiring to hear of your celebrations and holidays….so important to help maintain positivity. I’ve never bought a Daily Express in nearly 60 years…but for sure I will tomorrow! Stay strong….you’re a wonderful person.

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  2. Gail says:

    Definitely upload the Daily Express to your page! Hi. I’m a blogger here as well and a certified fitness professional. I was diagnosed with colon cancer, but I am not as young as you. My surgeon told me, however, that he is seeing more and more young people (late twenties to early thirties) coming to him with late stage colon cancer. It;s horrific. Something is going on and I hope we can find out what that is. You’re right…get checked no matter what your age and PUSH for further testing. Cheers to you!

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  3. Sue Worden says:

    Hi Hannah
    I was very interested in your story and I send you lots of love and best wishes for a very speedy recovery. You are young, strong and positive and I bet the news will be good. My own daughter, Charlotte, is suffering with similar symptoms and we are pushing for every test we can get. She is 24 and, like you, wants to enjoy life! Take good care of yourself, Hannah! Sue. Xx

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  4. Paul Chadwick says:

    Hi Hannah, sounds like I was a month ahead of you for bowel & stoma surgery in Whiston.

    I was diagnosed with early stage bowel cancer on 4th Feb 2016. The growth was removed on 19 Feb via a colonoscopy but on analysis they decided a partial bowel resection was required which took place on 27 April along with the temporary ileostomy.

    Unfortunately cancer cells where found in the Lymph nodes, so starting 9 June I was put on 8 X 3 weekly sessions of chemo – day 1 Oxaliplatin, followed by14 days capecitabine tablets followed by 6 days rest. The Oxaliplatin is administered at the Lilac Centre St Helens Hospital (10 mins from home!) via a cannula in my hand / wrist.

    My arm becomes very tender during the 4 hour process & removing the cannula & strip plasters is the most painful thing I’ve ever endured; it’s then painful for about 36 hours & then the massive pins & needles kick in for 7 to 10 days. The tablets make me slightly sickly but I’ve still a good appetite and also very tired.

    I’ve also managed to pick up infections between each of the 4 IV sessions so far (last session yesterday) which has led to #2 & #3 sessions being delayed, so I’m 17 days behind where I should be. The second infection had me in Whiston for 3 nights & days on IV antibiotics

    Plus they won’t reverse the stoma until after the chemo is finished ARRRRRGH!!! I had major problems for 3 weeks finding a bag that would stick – I was stood in the bathroom shaving one day & the bag started to peel off – I was stood trying to finish shaving with my right hand whilst the left was clinging onto my bag LOL. But I finally tried the SenSura Mio Maxi which are supposed to be one of the stickiest & these work fine, although I still absolutely HATE having a stoma!

    Anyhow, it does sound like you’re having a far worse time than me but like me you’re putting a positive face on the difficulties & trying your best to get out & about when you can – I did an 18 mile bike ride last Thursday for the first time since May but when I had to go to Whiston on Friday with the third infection the doc did say that I’d overdone it, so I guess it’s about knowing your limitations & getting to them but not exceeding them

    Great series of blogs Hannah & I hope things go well for you

    Paul

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