In August last year, our wonderful Dad (63) was diagnosed with laryngeal cancer and underwent a complete laryngectomy leaving him unable to speak. There were many difficulties and complications and Dad spent over 3 months in hospital. He came home last weekend to start his very long recovery and tragically the news he came home to was that his daughter, our sister, also has cancer.
On Christmas Eve, our brilliant sister Sally (37) was diagnosed with cholangiocarcinoma. Cholangiocarcinoma is a rare and aggressive bile duct cancer. It was caught during a routine MRI she was having as part of her Ulcerative Colitis disease.
In January, Sally had surgery where they removed two thirds of her liver with the aim to stop the cancer spreading, however surgery is not enough. Sally now has to undergo a very brutal 6 months of chemotherapy and there is still no guarantee this will work and for this reason Sally has already started to look at alternative therapies.
For those of you that don't know her, Sally is a brilliantly intelligent, hardworking paediatric NHS nurse specialising in the same bowel disorder that has plighted her life. At home she is a young, adoring, loving mother and wife.
Sally has never complained even in the darkest moments caused by her bowel condition and there have been many. Many hospital stays, many major surgeries and many days and nights of severe pain. A few years ago Sally was told she may never have children as a result of her bowel condition and she and her husband Aaron went through several rounds of painful and devastating IVF to finally have their miracles Rex and Sylvie, currently aged 1 and 2. In the last 18 months Sally's bowel condition has deteriorated considerably and just as we were preparing her for major surgery - which she still needs to have - we were told Sally has cholangiocarcinoma and our world imploded
As many of you will sadly know cancer is painful, brutal and heart-breaking, it is also bloody expensive and the financial fears for Sally and Aaron are very real. Sally has to travel to and from London for her treatment, they have to increase childcare and on top of this they had just purchased a house, finalised before her diagnosis. The plan was for them to slowly build the house together to create a family home. Aaron had planned to do most of the work himself over several months, now however we need to move fast so that Sally has somewhere safe to be during treatment and to create a home for her children’s future.
Aaron is a builder and is no longer able to work while he looks after Sally and the children. Being self-employed he will not be eligible for sick pay. On top of this COVID is preventing our wider family from being able to help them practically with childcare, house renovations, transport to hospital, cooking, cleaning...the list is endless.
We are living in fear over what lays ahead for Sally and this is one part of our effort to try and help.
Lots of our lovely friends and family have asked how they can help and whilst we HATE ever asking for anything, this time we need it. We have put together this go fund me page so that people can support and accelerate Sally's recovery in any way they can.
If you want to help, if you wish you could, if you can spare £2, £5, £10 - whatever - then please, please, please donate to this page. As a family we are supporting financially in every way we can but we need more help. These funds will help with any private care and alternative therapies we have to seek, and ease some of the terrifying financial burdens that lay ahead.
Rest assured that any surplus money we raise will be donated to Cancer Research.
Thank you everyone,
Katie & Ed
- Sarah Middlemas
- Jonathan Ford
- Jessica Nicholls
- Brenda Hilvert
- Christine Zammit-Tabona
Organiser and beneficiary
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