My name is Angela Denney and I am 53 years old. I have received wonderful support from staff and volunteers at Cancer Support Scotland who were there to listen in my time of need.
I was diagnosed with bowel cancer in January 2016 through the bowel screening programme. It was a massive shock and my world fell apart and I’m grateful to the kind and caring people at Cancer Support Scotland who offered support in a calm environment
I have suffered from irritable bowel syndrome for 35 years, dealt with my symptoms on a daily basis and never felt ill apart from pins and needles around my tummy area and being quite tired.
After several scans, I was told care would be palliative while being offered eight cycles of chemotherapy as I had a tumour in the sigmoid area of the bowel, a small tumour in my liver, evidence of cancer in the nodules in the peritoneum, the lymph nodes around the aorta and one small lymph node in my neck.
I was completely devastated but felt very well. When I was offered chemotherapy I started to fight back and my thinking changed into survival mode. I had to stop working and have been absent for 15 months.
After cycle four, my lymph nodes and the cancer in the peritoneum was gone; after cycle eight, the two tumours had gone too. I then had two clear PET scans. My consultant was delighted and I was able to have a bowel operation in late March and recovered after three months.
I decided to access the services at Cancer Support Scotland because I felt physically tired after my treatment and, through the stress of my cancer journey, my body was aching.
I spoke to the person who offers massage and other therapies who recommended what would be suitable for my needs. I found the complementary therapy service most beneficial and it has helped my recovery. I would certainly recommend this service.
I will be having three-monthly scans for now and I will be returning to work in August. My determination and positive attitude has certainly enabled me to fight back with the support from my family and friends and a good diet.
I am much stronger mentally and physically now and trying not to look back but looking to the future by taking small steps, being kind to myself and listening to my body.
Cancer Support Scotland is a valuable resource and it was a privilege to be able to access its services when I needed them.
What it did for me rates 10 out of 10.