After her diagnosis, Adeline found confidence again as a model in The Scotland Show. She explains how giving back makes her feel she can make a difference.
I was scared about my future
I was diagnosed December 2015. I can’t believe it was five years ago!
Two weeks before Christmas I woke up with my hands resting on a hard lump in my breast. I went to the doctor the next day and was quickly referred on. I got the results on 18 December.
It was very hard. I have four children, who were still at school, college and university, and my dad had incurable prostate cancer – it was really scary. My dad has since passed away.
I don't even remember that Christmas
I hadn't even bought presents as I had no energy. My poor husband had to run out and get them on 23 December! I still enjoyed it, but hanging over me were MRI scan results to check if it had spread to my bones, which took longer because of the holidays.
I had a mastectomy on 4 February, World Cancer Day, followed by chemotherapy. I reacted badly to the chemo and struggled with the side effects. I look back now and think, ‘did I go through that? Was that really me?’.
I think what helped me through was that I'm quite a positive person, I'm’ very strong. I’m also spiritual and I really believe a guardian angel was looking after me, and my family were a great support. For information I used the Breast Cancer Care website, and learnt more from that than any of the nurses or consultants in my hospital. I didn’t understand what healthcare professionals were telling me, but the Breast Cancer Care information made sense.
I got my confidence back
A few years later I was reading a magazine and read a story about a woman modelling for the Breast Cancer Care Show in Scotland. I looked it up and saw that the deadline for model applications were just seven days away. I quickly applied and got a place. I feel like it was meant to be.
The Show gave me my confidence back. I was such a ‘girly-girl’, and losing my breast was really hard. Meeting the other men and women who were models was incredible and they supported me so much. They also inspired me to volunteer – lots of them felt they wanted to give back, so had given their time to support the charity. I knew I wanted to do the same.
It feels amazing to give back
As I’m back at work I can’t do as much as I’d like, but whatever I can do makes me feel so good. I know I'm helping a really good cause.
I fundraised when I did The Show, held an Afternoon Tea and even went on to Zip Slide the Clyde! I also volunteered at The Show last year. It's amazing to see the other side of it, I didn’t realise how much work goes into putting it all together, and how many wonderful people are helping and volunteering. I cried the whole night, it was so emotional. I'll be doing it again this year too.
I know I can make a difference
Volunteering and fundraising make me so happy because I know that I can help at least one person get support, whether it’s a call with the nurses on the Helpline or a place on the Moving Forward course. I'm giving back for all the help that I've got, and I've made friends along the way.
Join our volunteering family and make a difference for anyone affected by breast cancer.