Hi, I found my lump on the first day of the new millennium and was then diagnosed the week after being made redundant from a job where I had worked for almost 17 years - my life then changed in many ways!

I had a wide excision and a complete auxiliary clearance, sadly a rather severe wound infection, followed by the news that the initial operation hadn’t been a success. Since I was at the front of the queue when the boobies were given out, I managed (with great success) to have a further excision. This was followed by radiotherapy, FEC chemotherapy and then no further drugs or treatment (since my cancer was a negative cancer and not a hormone lead cancer) – my lump was grade 3.

I was in my early 40’s when I was diagnosed with a daughter who was 13 – not the best time for her, and whilst I felt very concerned and worried about the uncertainty that I felt I had put my family in, there was nothing do other than all strap ourselves down for a roller coaster ride, that we sometimes didn’t enjoy at all and one that we couldn’t get off until the end of treatment!

Once I had escaped treatment, I took myself off to university, since it was something I always felt I had missed out on and with no job demands, it was an easy decision to make and I am eternally grateful for the wonderful gift of life that I have been given.

I've been a Someone Like Me volunteer since 2003. I've had some face-to-face clients as well from a support group at the hospital where I was treated.

You can email me at: marianne@breastcancernow.org