We caught up with Lindsey Bishop, aged 39 from Altrincham, who is taking on a mammoth challenge – Manchester Marathon – in support of Prevent Breast Cancer.
Lindsay is sharing her breast cancer story to empower those who are struggling emotionally through treatment. She hopes that her experiences might ‘help someone to avoid going through this”. Here is how Lindsay, her friends and family are giving back, by supporting PBC.
“I am undertaking the Manchester Marathon 2020 on the 5th April with a group of friends to raise money for Prevent Breast Cancer. I received exceptional health care whilst I was ill with breast cancer and beyond. I want to be able to give back for the amazing health care I have received, by setting this personal challenge. My friends who I have met whilst running have also agreed to raise money for Prevent Breast Cancer. This is the only charity that uses the money to fight to stop breast cancer before it occurs and after my own personal experiences it is something very important to me.
I was diagnosed with an aggressive form of breast cancer in February 2017. I never found a lump or suspected anything, and I had an assumption that breast cancer was an older woman’s disease.
During my first visit to the Nightingale Centre, I was in complete denial that anything too sinister was going to occur as my only symptom was a tugging or pulling sensation in my right boob. One weekend I had also experienced a painful armpit when putting some deodorant. After a sleepless night with my 18-month baby I decided I should get this checked out. I had also recently increased my exercise and as a result had lost some weight, so I thought these complaints were due to an ill-fitting sports bra.
I was examined and sent for a scan just to make sure as I had passed the physical examination. It was during the ultra-scan that my tumour was found. I can remember being in absolute shock that this was happening to me. I had a core biopsy and was told that I needed to return in one week’s time cutting my holiday short. I was floored!!!
A very long week later, I was ushered into a room and my Consultant Dr Cliona Kirwan and a Breast Care Nurse, Sarah, gave me the devastating news. I was advised about the treatment plan and that I would have to have further scans to check whether it had spread. The next couple of weeks were a horrible blur. I was in shock and immersed immediately into a world of frequent and various appointments for scans and tests. I was then referred to Christie’s where I met my Oncologist. I signed consent for some very hard-core chemotherapy drugs with a full host of side effects which scared the living daylights out of me.
I underwent 10 months of treatment: chemotherapy, surgery including a lumpectomy and all of my lymph nodes in my right armpit and then 4 weeks of radiotherapy. I came into contact with many different types of health care professionals, who were all helping me through this very unwanted journey. All were very supportive and focused to help alleviate and reduce any difficulties that I had, whilst making sure holistically I was well cared for both physically and psychologically. I am very grateful to Dr. Kirwan. It was clear she knew her stuff and she made me feel very safe. She told me exactly what to expect and when, which is what I needed whilst I went through various tests, results and treatment.
My treatment has saved my life and it means that I am around to see my two gorgeous girls grow up. I have yearly scans, and this will continue up until the age of 50 when I will go back on the normal system. Prevent Breast Cancer carries out essential research with the aim to combat breast cancer before it starts. Meaning that hopefully one day other people will not have to deal with this very cruel and nasty disease.”
Lindsay is our star fundraiser for the Manchester Marathon, having already raised over £1,000 for Prevent Breast Cancer. If you’d like to help Lindsay smash her fundraising target please donate here.