My beautiful daughter Christine passed away on Mother’s Day, May 10th, 2020 after being diagnosed with Stage 4 bowel cancer five weeks earlier. Christine was a mother of three small children the youngest being 21 months and oldest eight.
For the past six years she had been going to the doctors with concerns that she was tired, had problems with her bowels and she just didn't feel right. Her GP kept telling her it was due to her pregnancies.
Then they diagnosed her in October 2019 with coeliac disease. Christine went on a gluten free diet and for four months this seemed to work. Not once was a colonoscopy suggested for a clear diagnosis.
But then she started to lose weight and struggled to keep food down. She was constantly needing to go to the bathroom. The fatigue was overwhelming. She yet again went to her GP, who said it was all part of coeliac disease and with having young baby.
On the 3rd of April my other daughter and I went to visit Christine as she wasn't feeling so good. It was that day she went to another GP who ordered tests to be done straight away.
The next day she and her husband were told that Christine had cancer. She was told by her Gastroenterologist to have a colonoscopy on the Tuesday, but she could not do the prep for the procedure. She couldn't keep anything down. Christine was rushed to hospital and had two stents placed in her bowel.
It was Stage 4 bowel cancer and there was nothing that could be done.
Christine was able to have a week at home with her family before she passed. The one thing she wanted to do was hold her baby one last time, however she was too weak.
If there is one thing we can do to prevent this happening to anyone else, we will do it! Bowel cancer is not an old person's disease, it can happen to anyone at any age. If you know there is something not right seek help and if you Doctor keeps dismissing you ask for further investigation. It's your body and you know when something isn't right.
There isn't a day that goes but that we don't grieve the loss of Christine but it could have been such a different matter if testing was done earlier.