Sunday, 15 November 2015

My English Cancer

Author: Sandra M

Hola amigos,

I have never dared to write a post for the blog simply not just because I didn't want to say things, just because I thought my foreign English wouldn't do justice to all the things I would like to say. However now, I have been learning that my cancer is proper English, with its proper RP accent, with the London look, like a Londoner accent. My cancer was born in this country, my cancer was found in England and the NHS is looking after me the best they possibly can. I am never felt more English that I feel now even though I am genuinely Spanish from top to bottom with my expressive hands, my funny faces when I talk, my brown eyes and the straightforwardness of words when I speak my language. Funny enough, I struggle so so much speaking about my disease in Spanish. It is so hard that I really need to think carefully the words.

I hesitated so many times to join YBCN (Younger Breast Cancer Network UK) feeling that I shouldn't be part of this group. I was totally and utterly wrong. What could I have done without this? How could I've been comforted when I was alone, when my family cried over the phone, those time when I was losing the plot or I had millions of questions. One thing I remember was my fear to post anything in the group and I dared. I dared because from second number one I knew I was in caring and supportive hands. All the welcomes and the warm greetings made me feel better already.
I have BREAST CANCER, finally I said it after two paragraphs. I was diagnosed the 19th of November 2014 when my sister was having her 36th birthday and I ruined it telling the crap news that the biopsy confirmed it was cancer. Homerton greatest surgeon told me I had triple negative breast cancer, stage 3, grade 3, very gently, well managed and with lots of encouraging words. She told me we caught it just in time. And everything worked! Yippie!!! My chemo was a success, the surgery worked and my arm is feeling better after my sentinel node biopsy. Rads were a walk in the park and during those 21 days of radiotherapy I enjoyed the look of a lovely member of staff, nice, caring, geeky, intelligent look, smart, with glasses and tall!!! I gave the team my email address but he didn't get the hint or perhaps he was too professional and my mailbox didn't get the email. Oooops!! Hehehe
I am LUCKY, I truly think I am, however many other moments I wonder whys and what's the reason behind my cancer or even if I deserved this, I guess we all do wonder and question. Unfortunately, we will never know and that's fine. We haven't done anything wrong, we didn't eat too much bacon or drank too much wine, we are not responsible for this. It is just sometimes the way things are and it sucks and we can only try and hope for the best.

I always hope for the best even now that I know my breast cancer has come back. Last Friday I was told my cancer spread to my brain. It doesn't look promising, there are two areas where the bastard has spread and we/they don't know much else yet
I want to live my life whatever the time I have, I want to keep up, carry on being resilient and stubborn like the bamboo when the wind blows and tries to break it and it bends and comes back up. Believe me when I say those words because I fucking am.
I know the outcome of all this, I don't need to remind you what will happen to me but whatever the time I have I really want to DO. I need to enjoy, laugh, cry, share, travel, see friends, eat in restaurants, go to the cinema, polish my nails, discover new books and write many words.
Friday yes, I was a mess but I accomplished things too. I was able to leave the counselling room with raccoon eyes and a clown nose and I finally asked for help, first time ever! I told my dearest friends to have a coffee with me and make jokes that evening. My sister whose birthday I spoiled last year, flew over to London that night and it felt good. We did things, lots of things. And on Saturday the 7th of Nov 2015 ( yesterday) all my other siblings went all together to my little town and helped me to break the news to my parents. Gosh, it was so hard. I managed not to cry and kept neutral with my feelings as I know my mum will be devastated and it wouldn't help with my tears. They both ended up in hospital after the news, my father because he just came out from heart surgery and had a shock and my mum because she had such a huge breakdown that needed painkillers to make her feel better.
I am so sorry this post might look full of fear and pain but it is nonetheless the opposite. I want to give you a big cheer up.
I am already thinking about my funeral, which is very odd and probably not the best thing to have in mind at the moment. But somehow it is for me like organising a big fat party. I have so many plans for that day that makes me smile.
I would like to send love to you and tell you to grab minutes with your hands, enjoy the seconds of today, laugh to adversity, grab your life and hug it until your arms hurt and do things you love the most. It is our precious time, our treasure. Please look after that.

I leave it here with a quote I heard yesterday when I was in the cinema watching 007.

“You are a dancing kite in the middle of a hurricane” Yes indeed!

So much love,

Sandra M

Me before November 2014

First chemo done! And champagne! 

Second surgery and a "new knickers hat"
Sad news with secondary diagnosis, and steroids = cleaning house windows


  1. Hola Sandra, muchas gracias por tus palabras, aquello que siempre oimos y pensamos pero no llegamos a asumir...
    " I would like to send love to you and tell you to grab minutes with your hands, enjoy the seconds of today, laugh to adversity, grab your life and hug it until your arms hurt and do things you love the most. It is our precious time, our treasure. Please look after that."
    Un abrazo muy fuerte, y tambien para tu hermana

  2. Muchas gracias Gabriel por seguir el blog. Un abrazo fuerte.

  3. Muchas gracias Gabriel por seguir el blog, leerlo y entenderlo. Un fuerte abrazo para ti también.x