Having never heard of this condition it did not register that this was cancer. I was on my own when the consultant broke the news, having had so many visits to the hospital I thought this would be another 'we can’t find anything wrong'. It was a shock to say the least. I had no warning or pre-counselling about what I was about to be told.
I drove to work after that in my state of shock and the first people I told were my boss and a colleague. They cried with me.
I was put on a treatment of R-CHOP chemotherapy for six months followed by 18 rounds of radiotherapy in 2009. Having spent four months researching on the internet to learn more about NHL I realised that there were alternative therapies if I could do it privately. Unfortunately I got no support whatsoever from my then husband and family. The gossip mill engineered by him was that I was refusing treatment and on a ‘death wish’.
In the end under immense pressure I conceded and seven years later regret having gone through it. I still suffer from the side effects of the treatments. My immune system never fully recovered and I still have neuropathy in my feet. My hair thinned out and never recovered. I wear wigs all the time. I feel I was not given the full information as to the extent of the damage the treatment would cause.
I first contacted Cancer Options in 2008 after my cancer diagnosis and was directed to Dr Chris Etheridge, a herbalist, and began developing an integrative plan. Having heard about ozone therapy I pursued this with high dose vitamins intravenously, followed by supplements and a change of diet. I visited the Penny Brohn Centre in Bristol (pictured right) and have been on juicing retreat in Spain. I cut out refined sugars and fast foods and whenever possible eat organic foods. I have spent thousands in keeping well.
After my treatments, I had not been able to get back to work due to regular ill health caused by low immunity. Dr Etheridge recommended Yes to Life when I could no longer afford to pay for a regular supply of supplements.
I first contacted Yes to Life via email and filled out an application form for funding online. I was contacted a day later and have had excellent service each time I have needed help. The charity have supported me with four monthly awards. My treatment of ozone and vitamin injections costs £268 a week and the funding from Yes to Life has gone towards this and helped me stay out of debt as I am on benefits. My son and another friend also help.
Yes to Life means a great deal to me as it is the only organisation that I know of that actually helps to give people a chance to use alternative therapies. I wish I had heard of the charity earlier.
Yes to Life - I think you are a God-send, you are doing excellent work. May you continue to grow and help many more people. Thank you is not enough for what you do.
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