I had intermittent anaemia for about three years, which was treated with iron tablets and vitamin B injections and seemed to resolve the problem, but I was sent for further tests in 2006 when the persistent stomach pain I had been experiencing on and off worsened.
A specialist recommended a CT scan, which showed an abnormal growth in my bowel. Five days later I was given an iron infusion, then a colonoscopy a week later, then a bowel resection the following week.
I was told I would have to have 12 chemotherapy treatments (5-FU & Eloxatin). Treatments were to be fortnightly, but after 6 treatments they became every three weeks due to my body not recovering enough for them to be fortnightly. However, only ten treatments were ever administered because I struggled with the side effects. It was a trying time: I was very tired but still working part-time, which, looking back, really helped me focus on something other than cancer and chemotherapy. I was very tired and practically did nothing but sleep and work during that time, with no energy left over for anything else, I had to let my housework standards slip during that time and meals became very simple.