A mother-of-two has beaten the odds after being told she had just 12 months to live when she was first diagnosed an aggressive brain tumour — four years ago.
Suzanne Davies, 39, was diagnosed with a grade four glioblastoma brain tumour on the left side of her brain in 2014.
Her condition led to her struggling to communicate with her loved ones and knowing that those around her were talking but having no idea what they were saying.
Mum-of-two Suzanne, from Newtonhill, Aberdeenshire, was devastated when she was told she may only have a year to live.
She could only look on as medics worked to remove the tumour during an awake craniotomy surgery — but some of the mass still remains.
And while her condition is described as stable by doctors, she has been told her tumour “will never be gone”.
Suzanne, who worked as a treasury assistant, now has to undergo an MRI scan every six months to see whether the mass has grown.
In 2014, Suzanne said she began getting severe headaches and “absent moments” where she could hear people talking but couldn’t understand what they were saying.
She said: “It felt like a nightmare.
“I would send text messages thinking they made sense but they didn’t.
“I experienced the same with receiving texts and emails, I just couldn’t read or understand them.
“I could hear people talking but I couldn’t speak back. It was because the tumour was pushing on the speech part of my brain.
“I had two young kids at the time so I thought I was just busy and didn’t think much else of it.
“I was getting really strong headaches and I would wake up during the night unable to breathe.
“I knew something wasn’t right so I went to the doctors and my GP thought she knew right away that it was a brain tumour so I was sent to the hospital.”
Suzanne said she was devastated when doctors confirmed it was a brain tumour.
She said her husband Owen, 45, a graphic designer, completely broke down when he heard the news.
She added: “When they told me it was a brain tumour I just said ok, but Owen just broke down.
“And then I would start thinking about him and the kids and get upset.
“But I knew there was no way I was going anywhere – the kids were still so young and I wasn’t missing them growing up.
“They told me I would have about a year to live, and that was just horrendous.
“You never expect to hear that – you just think you’ll get chemo and it will make you better and the tumour will be gone.
“But to hear it will always be there was horrible.
“Owen and I started having conversations I never expected to have at 35-years-old. You think you’re going to be here forever to bring up your kids.
“We just knew we had to try and live the best life we could.”
Suzanne started chemotherapy and radiotherapy which she said included “a lot of tears and laughs and wigs.”
She added: “The treatments have caused me to have serious fatigue issues, the start of an early menopause, disintegration of my Pituitary Gland, low immunity levels and a thyroid condition.
“These result in a lack of energy which means I am unable to do a lot of things that I did before, exposure to more illnesses due to my lowered immunity.
“I am also limited to certain sports that I did before.”
Suzanne is now trying to raise £10,000 for CLAN – a local cancer charity supporting cancer patients and their families.
Readers can donate by going to www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/clansuze