The trip back in time

Quite by chance, after a few months relatively free of medical appointments, I saw my breast surgeon and my oncologist in the space of two days last week. In between appointments, I got very little done. I’ve been trying to run a bit, but I’ve torn a ligament, so I can’t do it at the... Continue Reading →

The big box full of love

When my sister, Rachel, turned twenty-one, she was in her final year of university in Bangor and I was in my first year at Southampton. These universities were not chosen with travelling between them in mind. I’m pretty sure the journey to visit her took seven hours, and it definitely involved five trains. Like a... Continue Reading →

The writing progress

Since my first agent and I went our separate ways back in 2013, my novel unsold, I’ve been drifting a bit in terms of my writing. My confidence had taken a huge knock, and I’d just had Joseph, so there wasn’t much time to write anyway. Last year, I started a new novel (my third)... Continue Reading →

The highs and the lows

I’ve had some lovely highs and some awful lows recently. Elodie is walking. I love watching her as she lets go of my hand and takes a first, slow step, then another, her face full of concentration. Last weekend, we went out with friends; the dads and three-year-old boys to the cinema to watch episodes... Continue Reading →

The big sea

Last week, we went on holiday, staying in a villa in Majorca with two other families. We used to do this with these same people before any of us were parents: reading, swimming, eating and drinking. And while spending a week with them was a little like going back in time and it was great... Continue Reading →

The award shortlist

I started this blog twenty-seven days after I was diagnosed with breast cancer. I remember testing out the idea in a conversation with my mum, before I knew I was going to do it. ‘Some people write a blog about it all,’ I said. Mum said she thought I should. I’ve been a writer for... Continue Reading →

The first birthday

Elodie turned one this week, and my nephew, Jay, will turn one next week, so at the weekend we had our family over, ate some cake and opened some presents. Rachel came. She’s been coming home for short visits on Saturdays for a few weeks, but this was the first time she’d been to our... Continue Reading →

The gift of new bras

I’ve had more downs than ups recently. I’ve had tonsillitis, an upset stomach and an ear infection in two weeks; my immune system hasn’t recovered, it seems. I’m not sleeping well. Sometimes it’s the kids, sometimes it’s not. I lie awake for long stretches in the night, thinking about what I need to do the... Continue Reading →

The nagging fear

Last night, I read that Olivia Newton-John’s breast cancer has returned, and spread to her spine, twenty five years after her initial diagnosis. I don’t know what to think about it, really. I watched Grease so many times as a child that she’s practically an old friend. On the one hand, I think that twenty... Continue Reading →

The incredible women

When I was first diagnosed, it never crossed my mind that cancer would bring a parade of incredible new women into my life. I knew a fair number of great women already, and I was – and continue to be – grateful for them. My existing friends and family took care of me, wrapped me... Continue Reading →

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