About Alice

I started this blog as a way of processing my discovery that at the age of 38, I had developed breast cancer. I’m not the youngest of even my friends or family to have had it, nevertheless it was a shock.

I decided I wanted to deal with it by writing, because I’d always kept a diary and written poetry when I was younger. That allowed me to spend the time thinking about what I was dealing with in more depth and with less panic than I otherwise might have done. So, mixing my love of poetry and song lyrics with my need to talk about what was happening, I created “Alice, what’s the matter?”.

A lumpectomy, 8 rounds of chemo and a BRCA genetic test later, I got a double mastectomy and some new boobs. I got my ovaries removed a few years later as well, because I have the BRCA2 gene mutation, which means I have a much higher risk of ovarian cancer if I leave my hormones to do their thing.

After my op, I used redundancy money to do some travelling in the form of a number of trips, each with different friends in 2013. I also got involved in fundraising and admin tasks for a charity, Keeping Abreast, and then with 4 online twitter friends, set up @bccww (Breast Cancer Chat World Wide) in 2014. It was a wonderful support network for me and even now the lovely group of people I met in the process are busy supporting so many others.

I recovered from chemo and got used to a new normal of weirdly swollen ankles, and random aches and pains. I was (and am) still hugely happy to be here. My Mum’s cancer returned though. She went through another round of chemo but unfortunately, we lost her to metastatic cancer in May 2015. I felt that at least I was able to understand a little of what she was going through and to try to support her through treatment.

We all miss her every day.

In order to be able to keep moving forward, I still check in occasionally with the people I met as part of my treatment journey, but I try to focus on new challenges and new experiences to keep my brain busy.

Everyone is different, but it’s common for people to only truly get a chance to process everything after it’s supposedly all over. Be kind to yourself, even (or especially) if you have some unexpectedly difficult days.


Where else can you find me?

Talk to me here:

Do listen to the music that goes with each post’s chosen lyrics.

Leave a Comment

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s