It all started for me back in April 2017, the previous few months beforehand I had experienced this unrelenting dry violent cough that just wouldn't go. After visiting the doctors many times in a short time frame, I was prescribed many different antibiotics and was diagnosed as having a sinus infection, chest infection and glandular fever. This turned out not the be the diagnosis and at this point I had enough because I was constantly worn down, tired, agitated and fed up. I also noticed that several lumps had appeared in my neck and across my collarbone. An ambulance was called; tests and a biopsy was promptly done.
To be told you've got cancer is a massive shock, kind of surreal feeling for someone who is 24 years old and still has their life ahead of them. I took it all on board and the diagnosis of Hodgkin's Lymphoma was a relief. I was Stage 4A. I finally had an answer to why I was ill for so long. Not the outcome I'd imagined but I now had a purpose to beat this terrible disease.
Fortunately it is highly treatable & very successful in the later stages. There was hope.
My journey now started and there I was stuck in a cycle for the next 6 months of hospital, chemotherapy, blood tests, transfusions, PET scans and talking on a regular basis to both my consultant and macmillan nurses. There wasn't too many side effects and I seemed to tolerate the chemo well. I had ABVD and EscBEACOPP. For me it was about focus and beating this disease. I had to. I wanted my life and my future back. Thankfully after the 6 months of treatment I had a Complete Metabolic Response to the chemotherapy and I was all clear of the Lymphoma. I have now been clear for about 19 months and slowly getting back to my life.