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My beautiful mum never lost her smile

The Bloodwise logo. Bloodwise appears in black text against a white background
Posted by
29 Mar 2019

Amy was 18 when her mother died from leukaemia. Even during her toughest times her mum never lost her smile, and today that strength and courage spurs Amy on to help others facing blood cancer.

My mum and I had always been best friends. Since my father left us when I was three, no matter what life seemed to throw at us, no matter how unfair, we always got through it, together.

But the hardest challenge of all hit us in February 2010, when mum was told she had acute myeloid leukaemia.

All the signs had been there, the tiredness, the bruises… but because my mum was always on the go, we didn’t think anything of it. When she got a hacking cough, we were finally able to persuade her to visit the doctors.

I didn’t know exactly what leukaemia was, but I knew it was dangerous, and I remember feeling terrified as my mum went into hospital.

Never losing her smile

I watched my mum battle to keep a constant smile on her face during the months of chemotherapy – while she had tubes, a hickman line, and all kinds of drugs put into her body.

She was always so positive and upbeat, often laughing and teasing the nurses. She soon became a favourite on the ward. Her spirit was infectious. My mum went through excruciating pain, loss of taste, loss of energy, and loss of weight from her tiny 5 ft 4 and a half (she would never let me forget the half) frame.

We were told my mum would need a bone marrow transplant, which would significantly increase her chances of a full recovery. Luckily my Aunt was a perfect match and my mum underwent a stem cell transplant.

But the cancer was unrelenting.

In October we were told that the cancer had come back and this time the doctors could not do any more for my beautiful mother. To my everlasting sadness, in December 2010 my beautiful and brave mother lost her battle against leukaemia.

Remembering my mum's life lessons

The hole she left in our hearts will never be replaced. But her spirit will always be with us, as well as the incredible lessons she taught me that I will cherish and live by forever. She has taught me the importance of helping others, and furthermore, to be persistent and never give up.

Being a committee member for the South Birmingham branch of Bloodwise has provided me with some extraordinary experiences, and I have had the opportunity to work with and support so many lovely and brave people.

Even though every day something happens that I just wish I could tell my mother about, her strength and courage spur me on.

With new research and clinical trials happening all the time, it is an exciting time to be involved with the charity. It is one of the best ways I find to channel the emotions that I have regarding my loss into helping others.

And hopefully one day people with relatives of blood cancer patients will not have to worry when they see their phone ringing, all because of the good work of Bloodwise.

Need to talk about blood cancer? You can call our Support Line Team on 0808 2080 888 or visit our information and support pages.

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