I was lying in bed thinking this is not curable, what does it mean? I was very, very scared – and that’s when Erica, my Macmillan nurse, walked in.
She asked me if I had any questions, and I could hear myself say ‘this isn’t curable’, and she said ‘I wouldn’t say it like that,’ and put the leaflets down on the bed next to me, and took my hand and then very ably explained to me what was going on, and I realised then that actually yes it was treatable, all of a sudden I had hope and I had something to fight for and I wasn’t scared anymore, and that’s what Erica did for me.
She was fantastic, she spent hours with me, she was an angel and helped me see the light at the end of the tunnel. I remember sitting on my bed one time and crying and saying that was it, I’d just had enough, and Erica came in and listened and ended up making me laugh – which took a lot.
When the doctor told me my illness was treatable but not curable I really thought my life was over. I had no hope. When Erica reassured me and gave me the information I needed she gave me the greatest gift ever – she gave me hope and the will to fight and survive.
I have a plaque in my house that reads: 'It doesn’t matter where you go in life, what you do or how much you have, it’s who you have beside you'. That was given to me by a very, very dear friend Lorraine. I think it really actually sums up the Macmillan unit totally, because they’re always beside you.
If right now I could go back to the Patsy in 2004 that was lying in that room, I would be saying ‘this lady that’s going to come in, trust her -which I did - listen to what she’s saying, because you are supported by an amazing group of people. Trust them and really look forward, look forward to a bright future.’