On the 17th December 2018 I was diagnosed with early stage Her2+ Breast Cancer.
After four sons we had just welcomed our fifth child, a daughter. It was definitely bittersweet. We were blessed with our princess but gutted that I was not in a position to give her my best like I had with our sons. She was two and a half months old when I was diagnosed.
I was facing a full year of treatment. Chemotherapy, surgery and radiation.
Almost halfway through my Chemotherapy my breast care nurse started to ask how I was managing financially. I didn’t think anything of it. I had started back at work after maternity leave, requesting that my hours be reduced because of my treatment.
I anticipated that it would be hard financially. We were just managing but with our second eldest starting High School things started to get tight and medical bills started to take priority over expenses for our children.
Each time I saw my breast care nurse she continued to ask about my finances. I didn’t divulge anything to her until I had told my siblings about it and was encouraged by them to let my breast care nurse know that things were starting to get tight.
That’s when I was introduced to the Joanne Mackay Breast Cancer Foundation. I had never heard of this foundation and I was overwhelmed by the support they provided for my family. How blessed I felt that a lady I had never met, who’s heart was so huge would settle the burden of our bills during this season.
The one thing I learnt is that us mums try to do it all. Even when we’re sick we try to get things done on our own without asking for help. During your trying seasons you have to take the load off yourself and let those who are willing help you. JMBCF has done just that. They alleviated our financial stress, giving us the much needed space to focus on healing as a family.
When you’re diagnosed you become aware of how much funding goes towards research (which is good don’t get me wrong) but I am so grateful that this foundation exists to directly support those who are battling and their families