The joy of hearing those words 'all clear' for cancer patient Roisin
Columnist Roisin Pelan shares her good news...
So the results are in, the scans have been checked and verified and I am delighted to announce that my latest scan was clear.
I cannot put into words the utter relief that I’m feeling. Everyone who has ever waited anxiously on scan results will know that awful ‘scanxiety’. It robs you of your sleep, of your positivity and sometimes, of your hope.
Before my breast cancer recurred last year, I had always pushed for scans (sometimes unsuccessfully), but now I’m faced with the reality that my recurrence was advanced and my chances of it coming back are high -I almost want to avoid them. I know how quickly everything in your life can change in just a split second.
Thankfully my news was great, wonderful, fantastic. I’ll have to have these scans every six months now, which is wonderful that they will monitor me so closely but also horrific that I’ll have to feel scanxious so often. Rough with the smooth, though.
There’s talk on the news this week about reducing the age of breast screening to 35 and over (currently it stands at over 40). Absolutely wonderful that progress is being made although I hope in time it will be 25 and over. I was 32 when I was diagnosed and I’ve become friends with so many other women affected who are way under 35. The main issue we need to drill into each other is that early detection is key. Tell your kids, your neighbours, your teachers and your friends....you could save their life.
Last year we raised over 20k for Cancer Research UK which was unbelievable. This year, we’re going for 30k. We kickstarted it last weekend with a charity darts night, all arranged by my lovely cousins. We managed to raise an astonishing £2,400 in one night alone so we are off to a brilliant start. We have plenty of great ideas lined up. One of them being the Yorkshire Three peaks on June 29 so lots of training and planning to come. I can’t wait.
Exercise can help to boost your immune system which in turn can help to lower your risk of recurrence so I am determined to get into shape this year, I’m eating well, living well and I’m making sure I do plenty of mindfulness to keep these fighting pants at wedgie level.
Before my recurrence, we had just been approved to adopt a little brother for Ivy. Obviously all that had to be put on hold and I was told by one consultant that adoption would no longer be an option for me.
But like I always say; ‘fight through your storm to get to your rainbow’ and whilst I don’t ever want to tempt fate again, my wonderful oncologist has now given us the go-ahead to crack
on with finding our son, wherever and whoever he may be. Wow, happy glow in my tum.
I’ll finish this chemo on March 20, which is bittersweet. For a lot of us who have cancer, chemo is our safety blanket. It’s yucky and exhausting and awful but it’s also helping to save our life. I will be so glad not to have chemo every week but I’ll miss it too. Chemo isn’t the enemy, cancer is - little rascal. I’ll go on to three other targeted therapies for life and monthly Zoladex for three years so I’ll still be covered and hopefully the magic medicine will continue to work. (Please Please Please).
I have to say the biggest thank you to each and every single one of you who spur me on day after day, who think of me, hope for me and pray for me. You’re helping me and my positivity more than you could ever know, everyone needs an army like mine.
Be happy, check yourself and enjoy the smallest things.
With love, Roisín x