• Cancer;
  • chemotherapy;
  • learning disabilities;
  • life history;
  • narratives;
  • radiotherapy;
  • resilience

Accessible summary

  • • 
    I had cancer, but I got better. This story is about what happened in my life, and about having cancer.
  • • 
    I was born with cerebral palsy and learning disabilities. My mum died of cancer when I was 14. It was difficult because she never told me that she was ill. It would have been better to know.
  • • 
    I went to my GP when my cancer started, but he kept saying there was nothing wrong. In the end, I was taken to hospital because I collapsed.
  • • 
    The first hospital never explained anything to me. I didn’t know what was going on, and I was very scared.
  • • 
    My doctor in the second hospital told me I had cancer. He explained everything. My doctor and carers helped me to decide what to do. I had chemotherapy (strong cancer medicine in a drip) and radiotherapy (a cancer treatment which is a bit like having an X-ray). It was hard but I knew I didn’t want to die.
  • • 
    My life is wonderful now. Having cancer made me stronger.
  • • 
    Doctors and nurses should know that it is really important people are told about their cancer. They should tell people in a way that they can understand.