A breast cancer survivor who finished intensive treatment just three weeks ago is cycling 25 miles for Cancer Research this Sunday.
Melanie Hurley, who finished four weeks of radio therapy for breast cancer on June 6 says she has always been ‘pragmatic’ in her response to difficult situations, not least in her discovery that she had breast cancer in February this year.
“In January I found a little lump,” Melanie explained. “I went down to the doctor within a week or so. She said it’s very tiny but she better send me off anyway for a check’.”
“I had a mammogram and an ultrasound and they both came back showing no markings of cancer but they kept saying it was unusual so they gave me a core biopsy.
“Up until that point the doctors had all said to me that it was nothing and so when I actually went for the results I went on my own thinking I’ll be out in five minutes.
“He said to me, ‘I was surprised by these results as you will be’, and then I kind of knew but I was just thinking ‘right, let’s deal with it. What are we going to do about this?’
“Then I was whisked away by a MacMillan nurse and it started to sink in. I thought ‘oh my god, these are the people that look after people with cancer’.”
The resident from Forest Grange, near Horsham, then had to tell her ten-year-old son and 13-year-old daughter.
“Initially I told them I had found a lump and the doctor said I have got to get it removed or it will get bigger and I made a joke about mummy having one boob bigger than the other.
“One question my daughter asked was ‘now you’ve had it will I have it?’ but thankfully there’s not a history of it in the family.”
Now recovering from a 20 day period of having radio therapy sessions every day from Monday to Friday, the next task for Melanie is to complete the Farnham Charity Bike Ride that she has scarcely had time to train for.
“I’ve never been on a road bike until I bought one especially for this event so learning to cycle on the road has been quite an adventure.
“I’m listening to my body. There are days when I come back from the morning school run and I’m so tired I have to go back to bed until lunch time.”
“I wanted somehow to give back for the treatment and care that I’ve received at the Breast Clinic at East Surrey Hospital. I’m really doing it for the other girls and women who have not been as fortunate as me and perhaps not able.”
To donate visit www.virginmoneygiving.com and search ‘Melanie Hurley’.