The Bourne Diagnosis – Nicola B & the Big C

Cancer & Me

I posted this article 2 years ago today and it is still one of my most read… My experience getting diagnosed with colorectal cancer and beyond…

Nicola Bourne

I knew that I had cancer.  I had a strong inner feeling and I knew.  I was experiencing textbook symptoms and had a basic knowledge based on a strong family history – my mother, Grandmother and Great-Grandfather all died from Bowel Cancer at ‘young’ ages.  Even so, getting diagnosed was not as easy as it should have been.

I had been getting rectal bleeding on and off, probably since 2006.  Over the years I had visited various GPs but they always said the same, that I was too young to have  Bowel Cancer, it was probably a small internal cut and if the bleeding went,  there was nothing to worry about.  The bleeding would stop so as far as the GPs were concerned, that was that.  I now know that the bleeding was probably polyps in the colon, which can bleed intermittently and it is these polyps that grow into cancerous…

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Does Cancer Ever End?

Any Human Heart, Cancer & Me

If you break your leg, it’s annoying but it’s cast, it heals, then it’s over.  Becomes nothing more than a dinner party story about your teachers not believing you broke your leg playing football at break time and having to hobble about on it in huge amounts of pain all day (my husband, not me).

But I’m increasingly feeling like I will never get the joy of talking about cancer in the past.

This week I have been in hospital. One of life’s irony’s is that having the type of treatment I had for cancer, put me into early menopause, which has thrown my internal pH balance off, which means the internal scar tissue caused by my surgery to remove the cancer, can’t heal properly, which means the scar is growing abnormal cells, which will turn cancerous if not removed.

Basically – my treatment for cancer is trying to give me cancer!  Excellent.

I generally stay quite positive about my treatment, but I can’t lie, this has really got me down. I just can’t be arsed quite frankly.

I don’t want to go back to hospital, I don’t want to be given what is essentially a long and painful smear and I definitely don’t want to hear about cells doing something they are not supposed to be doing…. again!  I have had the results and the cells are benign, which is great, but still – why won’t they just do as they are bloody told and stop causing trouble.  I actually have serious déjà vu writing that last sentence as I must have said it about fifteen times to my children this morning.  But I digress…

I do think a very difficult post-cancer treatment concept is the idea of it never quite being over.  I think no matter how in the back of your mind cancer is, it is still there and the tiniest thing – like a hospital appointment – can bring it all rushing to the front again.  I am struggling to get used to that and there are points when running away to a remote island that is no where near a hospital seems seriously appealing.

Logically I know that it is obviously for the best that I am in hospital regularly with doctors keeping a close eye on me so that cells can be removed before they even have a chance to turn cancerous but emotions aren’t always logical are they?  Mine definitely aren’t, but maybe that’s just me.

I will however not be running away to an island – I shall stand tall, keep moving forward and continue to show cancer and my troublesome cells the finger!


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Bowel Cancer Awareness Month – Day 6

Cancer & Me

Did you know…  Bowel Cancer is the UK’s second biggest cancer and the third biggest cancer amongst women.

Bowel Cancer is also very treatable if caught early so head to your GP for a referral if you have any of the main symptoms…



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