Morphine Mouse

For the past three weeks I’ve been getting increasingly troublesome headaches, and last week’s were joyfully accompanied by vomiting in the morning.  Whenever an ache or pain strikes I am reminded of the fragility of my situation, and at times denial seems like a better option than assuming the worst, so rather than bring forward my first NHS appointment with Professor Hope I decided to grimace and bear them.

Last Thursday, however, the headaches were getting so bad that they were impossible to ignore.  I had some liquid morphine left over from the time it was prescribed to alleviate my hip pain, and that seemed to be the only thing that would even touch the sides.

One night, after maybe a spoonful too many of the morphine, I was watching the West Wing with Tom in the living room when I spotted  a mouse scuttling across the kitchen floor.  After the obligatory scream, I stood on the couch urging Tom to ram a broom under the fridge where said mouse had scampered behind.  “Maybe you’ve overdone the morphine, love,” Tom suggested, when the wily rodent refused to emerge.

I was convinced I’d seen this mouse, albeit out of the corner of my eye, but with CJ getting death threats and President Bartlet having to foil a terror plot the rodent investigation would have to be postponed until the next day. The mouse was lucky this wasn’t one of those tedious, preachy West Wing episodes or the hunt would have continued long into the night.

The Friday before the appointment I felt really quite unwell so I emailed Professor Hope to give him a ‘heads-up’ on the state of my, er, head. This is one of the many great things about The Prof; he is happy for me to email him directly and although I don’t like to abuse this I know he will return my email almost immediately. This type of relationship was unthinkable with my old consultant.

I was convinced that the headaches were a tumour growing in my head. I’d never had this type of pain and coupled with the nausea they were classic signs that the cancer had yet again spread.  Of course, there were still arguments to suggest it might not be that; the other tumours were shrinking, so why should it be growing there? Or maybe the new pains were a side effect of the build up of all the drugs I’d been taking. But after being burned on previous occasions no amount of reasoning could ease our concerns.  We’d been there before with the sciatica that turned out to be cancer in my pelvis, and so another psychological approach was taken.  “Whatever it is, we will deal with it.”

We saw Professor Hope on the Monday and he immediately ordered CT scans on my brain and body.  He called the radiologist and asked him to get me in that day. If I’d been at the old hospital I would still be waiting for those scans, of that I am sure.  We were still within the NHS but this felt like very different treatment – there was a definite sense of urgency.

By Friday a new appointment was given and despite the Professor being away I was seen by his colleague who told me that some small spots had shown up on the CT scan of my head, including a 6mm tumour at the back of my brain.

I was going to say that I don’t expect different treatment because of my age but do you know what? I do. I’m 28 and have not even lived half of my years going by the ‘average’ life expectancy.  At the old hospital it was a case of ‘we’ll fit you in when we can’; here it was very different. Professor Hope had spoken to the radiology department even though he wasn’t at work and I was being booked in on Monday to be measured up for radiotherapy.

I didn’t cry when the news was given – Tom and I had strong suspicions what this was.  It has to be said that the more knockdowns you get the more adjusted you get to dealing with them.  The time period for tears and ‘it’s not fairs’ and ‘why us?’ seems to shorten with every blow as we somehow adapt to the new shitty situation.

Am I thinking about dying more often?  Yes I am. Do Tom and I hug each other every ten minutes and tell each other how much we love one another? Of course. I think the best way to sum how I’m feeling at the moment is if I share with you an email I sent to my brother on the evening we got the news.

Despite these shitty developments I know the question most of you will be asking yourselves is, “But Ellie, what about the mouse? Don’t leave us hanging until the next entry.” As if I would!  The mouse appears to have been a figment of my drug-fuelled imagination – it hasn’t been spotted again. Either that or the furry fella didn’t fancy sharing a flat with two soppy fools who can’t help saying ‘I love you’ whenever they pass in the hallway.


102 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. jmkimstra
    Oct 30, 2011 @ 19:17:19

    Sh*t. No other words can discribe this. Keep fighting until you feel you’ve had enough.


  2. Sarah Croft
    Oct 30, 2011 @ 19:40:36

    Hi Ellie, I am still following your corageous blog. I am so sorry to hear of your most recent crap news. I will keep u in my thoughts and am sure your amazingly positive outlook will help you through this. You take care and keep up your fight. with love to you

    Sarah Croft (Daglish) x x


  3. Ellie Jeffery
    Oct 30, 2011 @ 19:44:53

    Thanks Sarah – it’s a shitty bit of news but I’m determined to get on top of it asap – hopefully radiotherapy will blast them away. Thanks for continuing to read love, Ellie x


  4. Cathy Harris
    Oct 30, 2011 @ 19:53:16

    Hi Ellie:

    I have been following your blog from Houston, TX. I am a breast cancer survivor – I was diagnosed 3-1/2 years ago when I was 38. The reason I write is that 2 yrs, 4 months ago (but who is counting?) I too had a brain metastasis. I remember thinking at that time that I wish I knew of a real live person who was living and breathing with brain mets….so I write to you as one such person. It was really freaky to me to consider that this junk made it to my brain – it seemed so much more “personal” than a boring old liver or lungs. Silly, I know. Anyway, feel free to contact me if you want more detail about the treatment I had (I was able to have the Gamma Knife radiation therapy, lots of steroids and no surgery). I just wanted to let you know that I love your spirit and that you have reminded me how much I miss The West Wing – now that was geat tv!

    You can do this!


    • Ellie Jeffery
      Oct 30, 2011 @ 20:01:33

      Cathy thank you so much for your message. It is just what I needed. I have an appointment with the oncologist and radiologist tomorrow. I will be asking about gamma knife radiation for sure. It’s not always available on the NHS here but we will somehow get the money together if that is the best option. I can’t thank you enough for your comment and will let you know how I get on tomorrow. From London to Houston – thank you! xxx


    • Cassy
      Oct 31, 2011 @ 10:56:09

      Love the Pink Glove Dancing. It is great to see so much support out there and especially all those fantabulous survivors!!


  5. jenipringle
    Oct 30, 2011 @ 20:05:15

    My guess is – not morphine mouse – I saw one here , scuttling merrily across the floor the other night and since then no trace – apart from a few droppings in cupboard under sink. First thought that it was a flying spider (!) – and not even had a glass of wine!
    much love jeni


  6. Paola
    Oct 30, 2011 @ 20:12:49

    No, it’s not the morphine, you really don’t know me. But I read your blog and admire your strength. Go girl, show the beast what you can do!!!


  7. Becoming herself
    Oct 30, 2011 @ 20:26:04

    When I read your latest heartdropping news I almost immediately thought of Lance Armstrong, and how he overcame seeingly impossible odds (I know you’ve read his books). Nothing is impossible and everything is possible. Your spirit and positivity, as always, shine through.


    • Ellie Jeffery
      Oct 30, 2011 @ 20:39:40

      Thank you – I’m hoping after some kind of plan being made tomorrow I’ll be feeling more positive – I do know I am far from giving up. Thanks for continuing to follow the blog and for your supportive words x


  8. Ila
    Oct 30, 2011 @ 21:02:31

    Forza!Forza!forza! U re strong girl, ciao Ila.


  9. Tina
    Oct 30, 2011 @ 21:06:17

    Bloody hell Ellie I wasn’t expecting that. At all. BC is so sneaky, tnbc moreso than other types it seems. Its really shitty news and so not fair but on a positive note, I’m so pleased you are being treated well and that action is being taken quickly by your new team. More importantly, I’m relieved to see your truly inspriational fighting spirit hasn’t wavered in the light of these new developments. I will be thinking of you tomorrow and hoping the radiotherapy that follows is 100% effective for you. Big (((hugs))) to you- stay strong- you can do this! Much love, Tina xxx


  10. Lulu Du Toit
    Oct 30, 2011 @ 21:13:21

    Ellie I am so sorry to hear about this new hurdle, but your spirit is inspiring! Keep on fighting girlie! And as I say to another dear friend also in the ‘written off’ category – F@ck the statistics!


  11. tracey
    Oct 30, 2011 @ 21:28:55

    Hi Ellie……….you are an inspiration too so many, I think if it was me I would have given up, but you go girl!! Really hoping the new treatment works its magic, and again you can get through and over this.
    It sounds like you have support from so many people and thats what keeps us going……so get on and whoop its ass!
    much love
    Tracey xxx


  12. Midge
    Oct 30, 2011 @ 22:30:36

    My lazy cats often bring a mouse in that they can’t be bothered to kill. I have Found chunky kit kat is an effective lure.

    Sorry about your news, really hope there is an effective treatment option. I am so glad you trust your onc. Don’t know what else to say. Keep writing.



  13. Jessica Crawford (Goodwill)
    Oct 30, 2011 @ 22:53:02

    Just reading your blog for the 1st time. Sending lots of positive thoughts your way. Keep on with your fighting spirit & determination. Very inspiring & should make us all realise that we worry about stupid things & take stuff for granted far too often. Lots of love & hugs Jess x


  14. Vicky
    Oct 30, 2011 @ 23:28:37

    Hi Ellie, not the news we all expected. But remember your stronger than this and this fight is SO not over ! Stay positive, strong as always your an inspiration to us all !
    Love Vicky


  15. Marij Hyde
    Oct 31, 2011 @ 00:09:15

    I’ve been silently reading your blog from the start. I don’t think there are anymore words I can use that other people haven’t used already. Inspirational, a fighter, strong, funny, a beautiful person inside and out… the list goes on.
    I think this recent news deserves just one thing, a quick, sharp telling of, “fuck off and do one” and then soon it will slowly but surely get the message like all the other negative news you’ve received and start to do just that.
    I know this probably won’t mean much but I believe in you, believe when you think positive thoughts, positive things happen and this is just a blip in your road to recovery.
    Take care of yourself and your mouse :))
    Marij xx


  16. dawn
    Oct 31, 2011 @ 01:37:17

    Bugger, Ellie, so sorry to hear this.
    Still following and hoping for positive news in the future.
    I don’t know you – but from following your blog you strike me that if anyone can beat this, it will be you, with your attitude, spirit and determination.
    I look forward to reading better news soon.
    Please know that you are in my thoughts Ellie – stay strong girl x


    • Ellie Jeffery
      Oct 31, 2011 @ 20:31:35

      Thank you Dawn – we have a plan in place now so feeling stronger and ready to resume battle – there’s no other option! Thanks for your encouraging message xx


  17. Laura bundock
    Oct 31, 2011 @ 05:22:38

    Hi Eleanor – just wanted to say hello from Australia where we’ve moved for a while. Am reading your blog, thinking of you and sending you lots of love from the other side of the world. Have copied links of yr blog to friends here and you’ve now got a small but steady following on the north shore of Sydney. Keep it up and come and visit us soon … Xx


    • Ellie Jeffery
      Oct 31, 2011 @ 20:33:28

      Hello! Lovely to hear from you. There is a plan being formed by amazing new doctors and I’m feeling ready to get back in the fight mode. Sending love down under xx


  18. jennyecoop
    Oct 31, 2011 @ 09:58:39

    Hey Ellie, I hope your appointments with Prof Hope go well this week – if you need money for treatment (gamma knife) I’m sure lots of your readers would like to help. I don’t have lots, but I certainly would love to contribute to you getting better in any small way I could. Please keep us updated, lots of love xxx


    • Ellie Jeffery
      Oct 31, 2011 @ 20:35:05

      That’s such a lovely offer Jenny thank you. I have been so impressed by my new medical team and they are suggesting gamma-knife on the NHS – already booked in for an MRI tomorrow so things are moving quickly. This new hospital has opened my eyes up to how amazing the NHS is. xx


  19. Steve, Clapham
    Oct 31, 2011 @ 10:46:44

    That’s shite news. Praying for you, Ellie!

    This little gem is from the bible (Philippians chapter 4):
    Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.


    • Ellie Jeffery
      Oct 31, 2011 @ 20:37:20

      Hi Steve – thank you for your lovely message – I read it just before my appointment with Prof Hope. I am putting my trust in my amazing medical team and God and the goodwill of everyone who is supporting me, be it through the blog or friends and family. xx


  20. Alan Charnock
    Oct 31, 2011 @ 10:51:32

    FRICKIN tumours, dam them all. I dont think I will ever know or meet you Ellie, but you’re blog just gave me goose pimples because of your sad news. If you feel like I can do anything for you and Tom, within my means I will. Give me a shout. (even if its hunt that morphine mouse)


  21. Cassy
    Oct 31, 2011 @ 10:53:08

    Hi Ellie
    I have been following your blog after reading your story in Grazia, as I lost my sister to BC earlier this year, your story caught my attention. You spirit reminds me of the attitude my sister took towards the challenge, and her positivity got her 9 years of life after being “written-off” as well. Thoughts and prayers are with you from an American gal living in Belgium. The whole world is with you… You CAN DO THIS!! Best of luck


  22. Polly
    Oct 31, 2011 @ 10:58:46

    Hey Ellie. Think we have a mutual friend in Katherine Munro. Have u considered an integrative approach? Gerson Therapy, Hyperthermia etc? Also thought you might be interested in this. x


  23. Laura
    Oct 31, 2011 @ 11:29:34

    So sorry to hear about the crap news. Your positive attitude is amazing. Thoughts and prayers are with you and Tom. And if you’re a fan of the West Wing try watching Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip x


  24. Dominic
    Oct 31, 2011 @ 11:30:13

    We all seem to know of positive stories regarding surviving cancer…… I am looking forward to reading yours and the story of you and Tom for many many years to come. Keep going, Keep positive and keep writing your uplifting Blog.x
    Love to you and Tom
    X Dom & Shanella


    • Ellie Jeffery
      Oct 31, 2011 @ 20:42:21

      Thanks Dom – it’s been a tough old weekend and not much of a birthday for poor Tom but we’re getting a plan together and we will keep on going – there’s no alternative! Love to you both xx


  25. Phyllis Elias
    Oct 31, 2011 @ 11:38:58

    Ellie, You will be at the hospital as I write this, so just want to say good luck, you are so inspirational to everyone, and after such a huge blow, I cannot tell you how much I hope that the new treatment works for you. Prayers are all I can offer, and wishing you both everything good in the world. Your love shines through – and is such a brilliant light that this just has to be the support you need for each other. I am sure the NHS has to fund whatever is needed for you – and I am sure your lovely specialist will fight every inch of the way for you. The rest of us are here hopiing and praying for you. XXX


    • Ellie Jeffery
      Oct 31, 2011 @ 20:44:07

      Thank you for such a kind message. The NHS has come up trumps and they will fund gamma-knife for the brain tumours which is such a relief. I now can fully trust the new medical team and I’m starting to believe I can keep fighting on. Thank you for your prayers and good wishes xxx


  26. Clare
    Oct 31, 2011 @ 11:54:30

    Stay strong. I know this part is the hardest but when you have the plan, it will give you the strength you need to kick this to the curb. My love and thoughts are with you. Clare x


    • Ellie Jeffery
      Oct 31, 2011 @ 20:45:29

      Thanks Clare – you’re right about the plan – feeling better now we have some idea of where to go and so relieved the NHS are offering gamma-knife. The fight continues! xx


  27. Sue
    Oct 31, 2011 @ 15:21:21

    Bugger, bugger, bugger! Don’t take any notice of statistics, we’re all individuals and as has been said Lance Armstrong, John Hartson and others have overcome brain mets and are now NED. Hope the rads does its stuff… I was told never to underestimate rads, that it was the most powerful tool in the bc armoury. Lets get the sneaky, rogue cells zapped! Sending you all love and strength Sue x


    • Ellie Jeffery
      Oct 31, 2011 @ 20:47:02

      Thank you Sue. The radiologist seemed very positive that we could zap the bastards away. I am humbled by all the support I’ve been getting and it really does encourage me to keep going. xx


  28. Rachel
    Oct 31, 2011 @ 18:21:34

    Well that is something you didn’t need but as ever you will face it fighting and with the love and prayers of all your friends (that now includes blogg buddies!) and family. You are fabulous.xx


  29. Peas and Cougars
    Oct 31, 2011 @ 19:16:13

    I’m sorry to hear about your new hurdle. I just did a post about my struggle with migraines and my paranoia about tumors, which now seems pretty trivial compared to your very real battle. I’m sending positive energy your way though and I hope it’s only a matter of time until we hear that your only real problem is with disappearing/phantom mice!


    • Ellie Jeffery
      Oct 31, 2011 @ 20:49:56

      Thank you! I’m starting to think the mouse might not have been a drug-fuelled hallucination after hearing reports that they often pop up then disappear for weeks on end only to be spotted again! Oh for the day when unruly rodents are my biggest problem! xx


  30. Cassy
    Oct 31, 2011 @ 21:06:29

    Hi again, Ellie
    I am astounded at your ability to answer every comment on this blog, you are really inspiring… I decided to put a little more detail on here about my sister as I think you may be interested in her journey. My sister, who died in January after a long battle with BC , was a pediatrician, top of her field, Chief Resident and by everyone’s definition, an amazing doctor and scientist. It was only when she became desperate that she considered “alternative” medicine, such as diet, meditation etc. Although she never wanted to know the official prognosis, a few years back things were really bleak and it is my understanding they gave her weeks to live. She changed her diet to a Vegan diet and suddenly her tumors began to decrease in size. The oncologist pleaded with her to document EVERYTHING she was doing, as she had appeared to reverse growth of many of her tumors (in her lungs, liver and bones). She lived a full two years after that, inspired surely by her two young daughters and loving husband but definitely fueled by a healthy diet and exercise. She said to me that she wished she had embraced diet and “alternative” medicine before she did. I have looked at some of the links on your blog, and think you are so lucky to get all this flooded at you – breast milk? why not – I offered my own to my sister when she was near the end, fully believing the enzymes might just do the trick. PH- could be something in that as well… I guess the secret is believing in your own bodies’ ability to heal itself and helping it along with the best nutrition available.
    Sending you all the positive vibes possible, and praying for better results
    Biggest hug


  31. jennie mccallion
    Oct 31, 2011 @ 22:14:09

    Keep fighting it Ellie u can beat this. 100% u can.xxxx


  32. Debbie davies
    Nov 01, 2011 @ 00:38:15

    You can do it!
    Keep up your strength,
    keep up your energy,
    keep saying and hearing ‘ I love you’.

    You are meant to survive this and I am willing you too with all my heart
    love and strength
    Debbie x


    • Ellie Jeffery
      Nov 01, 2011 @ 08:32:21

      Thank you Debbie – MRI today then we can ready to blast the buggers out of my brain! xx


      • Debbie davies
        Nov 01, 2011 @ 08:39:09

        Good luck with the MRI today Ellie & Tom. It’s so amazing you are being seen to so swiftly and a credit to your consultant.
        Get zapping!
        Love always

  33. Kirsten
    Nov 01, 2011 @ 00:38:20

    Ellie, you are absolutely wonderful. Lots of love x


  34. Kordel Rogers
    Nov 01, 2011 @ 11:08:02

    Hey Ellie
    I first read your story in Gratzia and I immediately started to follow your blog. In a twisted kind of way, I enjoy reading your blogs as I find your writing enjoyable, ‘seat gripping’, sometimes funny, I just have to remind myself that this is ‘you’, a real person that this is happening too. Your courage and strength is utterly amazing and completely inspirational. I have never met you but I feel like I know you and I feel your pain. I am sorry to hear of your latest plight, another blow/hurdle to deal with. I am sure I join many other bloggers on here when I say “we are with you all the way”!!!
    Keep positive…….
    Much Love
    Kordel x


    • Ellie Jeffery
      Nov 01, 2011 @ 18:40:05

      Thanks Kordel. It is another hurdle to deal with you’re right. I’m sure there will be many more to come but I am hopeful and pray there will be times to celebrate too. Thank you for reading xx


  35. Marieke
    Nov 01, 2011 @ 13:03:48

    Ellie I am so sorry about your recent news. I know all about brain tumours and they are scary. Not just because they are cancer but they mess with our personality and functioning. The idea that we might change as a person and have no control over it is very scary. Very glad you feel you are in good hands with your treatment team. My Jane was trated in Coventry and had a similar pro-active team that never wasted a second when they felt urgency was required. Jane was pit on an expensive chemo (Temozolomide) which at some PCTs is only given for 6 months. When we mentioned this to the consultant, he said: she will be on this drugs for as long as I prescribe it to her, no more, no less, so don’t worry about it.

    It gives that little bit of comfort that someone else is also fighting your corner.

    I hope you will come through this as well as possible. Sending you lots of positive vibes.


    • Ellie Jeffery
      Nov 01, 2011 @ 18:38:47

      Hello Marieke. I hope you are coping ok. Thank you for your advice. I’m in to plan the radiotherapy tomorrow so just hopeful that blasts the two tumours away for good. Determined to stay determined! Sending positiveness and light back your way xx


  36. Hannah
    Nov 01, 2011 @ 13:10:58

    Hang on in there my dear. You are in our thoughs and sending you lots of love and positive vibes. Love from us all. Hxx


    • Ellie Jeffery
      Nov 01, 2011 @ 18:36:47

      Thanks love – we’ll have the radiotherapy booked in by tomorrow hopefully – zap the bastards away and then to get on a new drug to tackle of the rest of me. Sending love to you all xx


  37. Lesley Beeton
    Nov 01, 2011 @ 17:27:14

    Dear Ellie,
    My heart goes out to you and your family. My Mum found hypnotherapy really useful during her treatment, especially when facing scanxiety! A simple thing which made all the difference to us.
    I am finding so much inspiration in your blog, and wishing you continued strength and courage.
    Lesley xx


    • Ellie Jeffery
      Nov 01, 2011 @ 18:35:35

      Thank you Lesley – I’m so grateful to be with a team who seem to moving quickly and with my best interests at heart. Just got to keep plugging away and try to outsmart this disease. Ellie xx


  38. Alex Forrest
    Nov 01, 2011 @ 20:01:38

    Hi Ellie
    Just read your latest blog – you are so brave. We’re all thinking of you here in Westminster and are crossing everything for you. Alex Forrest x
    PS Mice are so quick you only ever see them out of the corner of your eye. So I don’t mean to alarm you unduly but there could be a mouse… Hope not!


  39. Mrs Smiles
    Nov 01, 2011 @ 21:32:01

    Ellie, I am gutted to hear about your latest hurdle. I bet it seems like you can’t catch a break (and that’s putting it lightly). As a fellow journo I was the biggest skeptic going but after a few health problems took up meditation and am a LOT more open minded. I now believe your attitude is 90% of the battle although I know it must be very hard at times. Thinking of you and following your inspirational blogs with bated breath. Xxx


  40. ladyleftfieldlover
    Nov 01, 2011 @ 21:39:18

    Just thinking of you.


  41. Catherine O'Neill
    Nov 01, 2011 @ 22:03:02

    Hi Ellie, I’ve been reading your blog since Alex told me what a fantastic writer you are and that i MUST read it…she was right! Only sad that things have got so much tougher and more painful for you and Tom since then. We’ve all been thinking of you Ellie, so much, and are keeping you in our prayers since the moment Alex told us about you having breast cancer. I can’t imagine what you’re going through but just wanted you to know that we are all ganging up on your cancer to help you fight it and we’re with you every step of the way, even if we’re not all there in person. I have no doubt at all that you can beat it. Just stay as wonderfully positive as you can and know that MANY people have you in their thoughts always. Sending you both love and positivity. Hope to see you soon back home up north! Much MUCH love Catherine (Alex’s sister) and all the Dobo’s XXXXX


    • Ellie Jeffery
      Nov 01, 2011 @ 23:13:53

      Hello my love. I’m so appreciative for all the Dobson prayers and positivity being sent my way – you’re a fab bunch! Thank you for such a lovely message. I’m up at Christmas so hopefully see you then, big loves xxx


  42. Josey
    Nov 02, 2011 @ 00:01:35

    Hi Ellie,
    I’m another stranger! After hearing about your amazing blog through a friend I’ve been glued to your every word. You really are an inspiration to us all and I am thinking and praying for you.


  43. Annabel
    Nov 02, 2011 @ 00:31:39

    Hi Ellie – we worked together briefly at ITN. You were known as EJ down in our basement “ON” team! You have such an amazing smile and I remember thinking what a great journalist you are. We lost touch but I wanted to let you know I’m thinking of you and your family. I’ve bawled my eyes out reading your entire blog, said a prayer kneeling on my bedroom floor and just hope that you have some great days ahead. You’re a gutsy lady EJ. You’re in my thoughts. Annabel


  44. Toni millard
    Nov 02, 2011 @ 06:05:45

    I have been watching reading your blogs and find them so inspirational, heartachingly sad but also you write at times with such whit. I love reading them.
    I too am a cancer patient with a so called termInal prognosis but I believe you try whatever you need to do to get through this but also to prove this disease wrong. At 41 with a lovely family I am not clocking off yet and I get the feeling you aren’t going to do that either!
    I hate saying good luck for the next battle as that always feels like I’m saying you or I need it but I am saying stay strong when you can and scream when you need to. Much love and positivity to you and your hubby
    Toni xx


  45. Rebecca W
    Nov 02, 2011 @ 21:47:15

    I’ve spent 4 days trying to work out what to say in response to this post and the first thing that seems to jump into my head is a purile playground chant: “Fight, fight fight.” which is very immature – particularly in contrast to the remarkable poise and dignity you are showing in relation to this latest piece of news.

    Then the next thing that jumps into my head is the yummy Dr Derek Shepherd from Grey’s Anatomy and how he is always operating on tumours and giving people a happy ever after.

    I realise neither of these things are particularly helpful (I also get that Grey’s isn’t a documentary! Its not real). Which is why I’ve spent 4 days trying to find the right words. However, I realised today that I don’t have them. There are no words. Apart from perhaps ‘fight’ but you’ve been doing that for 2 years.

    So I’ll leave the words to you. And I’ll go back to reading and feeling completely useless. Except perhaps if you need some breast milk? I still have loads of that if you nesed it?!

    Oh, and one of the best nights of my life was spent in a bar in Namibia. All night I kept seeing this mouse running across the spirits shelf above the bar. No-one else saw it and everyone else kept telling me it was the booze, I was hallucinating. Six hours we sat in that bar with the bloody mouse teasing me, then everyone else teasing me because I was adamant it was real. Anyway, just as we were leaving my pal Vince went stiff as a board and pointed at the bar. There, cleaning his whiskers by the Vodka, was my mouse.


  46. Helen
    Nov 02, 2011 @ 22:39:16

    Catching up with your blog today, you have fabulous inner strength to keep positive through yet another mega blow, looks like the blighters chose the wrong person to fight with! So glad you have such a good team behind you, even strong people need a helping hand through this and they sound excellent. Lots more positive thoughts coming your way, you’ve touched so many people Ellie and we’re all right there with you all the way xxx


  47. Paul Henson
    Nov 03, 2011 @ 00:18:35

    Stay positive Ellie. We are all behind you and you will beat this bastard. Your courage is inspiring x


  48. Emma
    Nov 03, 2011 @ 00:44:54

    Ellie- you’re the best of girls and even though I only know you through this blog it’s a privilege. Keep fighting babe- you’re doing great, Emmaxxxxxx


  49. LIndsay
    Nov 03, 2011 @ 02:36:21

    I think it was Christopher Reeve who once said ‘Once you choose hope, anything’s possible.’
    I worked in a cancer hospital for four years, booking scans for patients. People can and do beat the odds. I’m so glad that you have such a fantastic Dr and support team around you as it really does make a big difference. Wishing you all the best with the radiotherapy treatment… You’ve shown that you’re in this fight for the long haul Ellie, I hope with all my heart that you win. X


  50. Rebecca W
    Nov 03, 2011 @ 22:03:14

    Sorry, should have qualified why I shared my mouse story. You must have thought me quite bizarre!

    I guess it just struck me that if you fiercely believe something to be true, and you keep focussed that your are right, despite everything or everyone suggesting otherwise, eventually you’ll show them. Eventually that little mouse will reveal itself.

    So you need to keep believing that you will beat this thing, you need to keep believing in your happy ever after. Because eventually you’ll stick two fingers up to cancer. I truly believe that.


  51. Linda Ann McCrea
    Nov 11, 2011 @ 11:21:36

    Dear Ellie Hi .
    I am Linda from Belfast: Northern Ireland, and am a retired nurse.
    Just read your story yesterday in an on- line tabloid excerpt .
    Firstly , you are such a fantastic looking couple.Congratulations on forthcoming marriage.My prayers are for your complete healing . As a Christian,I hope you will know I shall not forget Tom and you each day plus your brother .Medically ,I may not be able to provide answers but a recent TV prog (docu )suggested a medication Laetrile (Vitamin B17 )offers hope for cancer sufferers .However it is a big secret apparently and US FDA will not license or acknowledge it .Apparently ,it is so covert that providers /suppliers sell it as apricot kernels. An organic farm producer in Canada provides many health products plus these Apricot kernels with the secret tablet inside !Yes, this sounds weird but please source Laetrile on an search engine plus web address for ordering apricot kernels:-
    ourfathersfarm .com
    Maybe you have tried and tested this B 17 already ?
    Also, ISCADOR which is a misteltoe product can be administered as an
    injection and appears to work wonders.A girl with cancer on Larry King Show is testament to it`s success ,8 years after cancer diagnosis . So that ispossibly another avenue .You did say in your last blog if any readers had a cure in their pocket to tell you . I`m doing this .Much love &God`s Richest Blessings & despite this awful recent development,I firmly believe in wonderful healing impossibilities happening to you .
    Linda x


  52. Ysabel Llerena
    Nov 11, 2011 @ 19:15:41

    Dear Ellie, Ia a Peruvian living in Canada. I am sending all my love to you and to Tom. You both are a super nice couple!
    Just to let you know that my Mother survived breast cancer for over 45 years!!! if she could…you can. My best friend was diagnosed stage 4 and was given six months to live. Well sixteen years have passed by and she is still around and working in a very active way.
    Be strong. Look forward for June 2102 and your beautiful wedding,



  53. Sheila
    Nov 11, 2011 @ 20:24:48


  54. marie hitchman
    Jan 14, 2012 @ 21:24:05

    Heard of your blog through breast cancer care magazine today. I am 43 with secondary breast cancer & share so many of your experiences particularly about the 2nd opinion you are a Grt inspiration good luck & thank you


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