How do you tell your children you have cancer?

Oh my poor children, what would any parent give to protect them from any hurt or pain. How often do we tell them to be happy in whatever they do and now I have to bring them sadness and sorrow, a very heavy burden to bear.

When my dad was dying of pancreatic cancer in 1997 I felt left out, I thought I was being lied to and so I was adamant that I wasn’t going to do this to my kids.

Richard was on Army exercise in North Yorkshire, I’d texted him to get in touch as soon as he could on the Friday I got my results but no reply from him that day.

Saturday morning Steve answers the house phone…. “It’s Richard” he said, my heart stopped, what do I say? I greeted him in my normal mommy way “Hi there darling, how are you?” He just replied “What’s wrong?” thinking it was his nan that maybe in trouble, sick or worse. I asked him where he was, he said he was up a mountain, I then asked if he was on his own and he replied yes as he had to walk up to the top of a hill to get a signal. Now Richard had no clue that I was even ill, we texted everyday as normal since he had been away but I hadn’t told him any of what was going on, he had no clue what was coming. I told him the best I could, the conversation was short. I told him to find Dan who I knew was with him on exercise and not to be on his own.

Now it’s coming up to the General Election and Ian (campaign manager) wants some photo’s for the campaign so showered and dressed with the dog we set off to a local beauty spot which is under threat from the local Tories for housing development. I can hardly walk, in pain and I have agreed to this!! I must be mad.

I’m in the car when Richard calls my mobile, he is in tears, he has to hand the phone to Dan who is in tears, I’m in tears and the dog who thinks that she is going for a walk is in the back of the car crying to get out. Steve, Ian and Paula are talking about the photo shoot outside of my misery. Finally some tears, finally someone cares, my boy miles away and alone with Dan in their tough Army uniforms are somewhere up a hill crying for me and allowing me to cry too. So instead of being a comfort I told them to “Man Up” and stop being stupid, it’s only cancer!

The photo shoot went ahead but the photos were never used and the hill was climbed in pain for the greater good of the forthcoming Election and my hubby.

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Richard spoke to his Sergent and was released the next day on the first transport home to be with us for two days before having to return to exercise. I was glad to see him and have a hug from my boy.

Rebecca I think was struggling to understand what was going on, she didn’t ask questions really and everything we told her she just said “okay”and handled it her way, alone in her bedroom.

My poor children, my driving force for being a hard working woman, to provide for these little people who depended on me and Steve for everything and I’d hurt them, I’m so sorry cancer did this to you both, now we were all on the journey together apart from I hadn’t told my step kids yet and left that to Steve.

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Wend

Married to Steve, I have two children - Rebecca and Richard. Steve has two children, Lauren and Chris. Rebecca lives with us (nurse Rebecca) and my mom Judy also has become nurse and housekeeper but lives in the West Midlands. My son is in the Army and comes home when he can. I am 47, born in 1967 and I was told I had bowel cancer on 22nd Feb 2015 and this blog is my journey through it. I hope it helps you as you were the reason I started it.

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