A brave woman has started a ‘living list’ which includes walking with alpacas and presenting the weather after being told she incurable breast and bone cancer.
Laura Hughes, 29, has a list of 48 things that she wants to complete in order for her to have the best life she can.
She said: “I wanted to do something positive and have some fun. I just want to make the most of my life.”
“All these treatments made me realise that I might not be here in a year or so. I wanted it to be a fun, living list.”
Laura’s living list consists things that her and her friends have suggested that they do, as she hasn’t been giving a time limit for her life, but knows that it is limited.
She said: “At this moment I haven’t been told how long I have left which really encourages me to want to tick everything off my living list. I’m hoping that I am able to do everything on the list in time.”
Laura was diagnosed with primary breast cancer four years ago, and thought she was eon the road to recovery earlier that year, until she was diagnosed with incurable bone cancer in October 2016.
Since then she has lost her hair due to having 10 rounds of chemotherapy, has had both her breasts removed and even realised there is a slim chance that she can ever start a family.
Laura, lives with her partner 35 -year-old Bradley Middleton, in Norwich. The couple move in together six years ago and were planning to start a family.
She said: ” We were all settled down, about to try and start a family which everyone dreams of, and now I can’t.
“Because i’m having ongoing treatment, I would be putting everyone at risk if I tried, I’ve had to adjust my life massively.
“I think Bradley has taken it really well, he’s so supportive and helps me a lot. I do worry, because this doesn’t just affect me, it also affects him.”
Bradley works as taxi driver and tries to attend as many hospital appointments as he can with Laura.
She first found a lump in her breast in February 2014 and went to her GP who referred her to a breast specialist unit.
She said: “I didn’t think much of it. Everyone told me that I had age on my side and it would be nothing, I was only 25.
“I thought that I was too young, no-one else in my family had suffered from Cancer and I just assumed that it would be nothing.
“I didn’t know what to do when I found out.”
Laura then was referred to Norfolk and Norwich University hospital’s breast unit where she had a biopsy and an ultra scan.
She was then invited back on February 24, for a follow-up and to receive the results.
“I was told I had breast cancer – my life completely turned upside down.”
The second diagnosis of cancer came after Laura started getting an aching pain in her right shoulder – which she assumed was a muscular pain as she had been going to the gym a lot.
After three trips to the physiotherapist and several hospital appointments she was informed that her breast cancer had spread to her bones, making it stage four cancer.
Laura said: “Unfortunately after only a year off treatment and getting normality back I was re-diagnosed with cancer in October 2016 when I discovered the cancer had spread into my bones on discovering a large tumour in my humerus head or my right shoulder.”
“I could not believe it when I was told. To be told the first time that you have cancer, and then to be told again that it is incurable. I just couldn’t process it.
“When you have your world turned upside down the first time, it’s hard enough. But to have it happen again, I just couldn’t believe it.”
Laura has now had shoulder reconstruction and now she is having more chemotherapy three times a week.
Due to her shoulder surgery she can no longer do her job as it restricts her movement.
She went on to say: “I’ve always been someone that’s really positive and I try and deal with things on my own.
She started up her own hairdressing business since 2012, and says that she is gutted she can longer do what she loves.
“It’s upsetting that I can no longer be a hairdresser, it’s really annoying that the one thing I actually loved doing, I can not longer do.”
Laura has since had 18 weeks of chemotherapy with with injections that try to stop the cancer from spreading called Herceptin, mastectomy of her left breast, choosing to have her right breast removed, radiotherapy, five years minimum of hormonal tablets and reconstruction surgery she felt like she was on the road to recovery.
Laura doesn’t know what has caused the cancer and has said that her family and friends have helped her stay positive.
“Telling someone that you have cancer, is just so awful. I always like to deal with things on my own – however, it’s really nice to have people there supporting you.”
Laura now hopes to update her blog every time she achieves something off her living list.
She has so far achieved, walking with Alpacas, getting a cocker spaniel that she has named Tilly , Presenting the weather and seeing a Strictly come dancing tour tour.
You can see her full list and read her blog here : https://lauraslifeisforlivinglist.wordpress.com/
The List consists of:
-Afternoon Tea at Claridges
-Ride on the Orient Express
-Walk the Alpacas in North Norfolk✔
-Fly somewhere Business Class
-Get a Puppy ✔
-Go to an Opera at the Royal Opera House
-See Strictly on Tour ✔
-Punting in Cambridge
-Have drinks in the Shard in a cocktail dress
-Day out at Ladies Day at Ascot
-Go Whale Watching
-Hold a 30th Birthday Party (April 2018)
-See Cirque Du Soleil
-See Lord of the Dance show
-Take a trip to the Maldives with Brad
-Ride a Gondola in Venice
-Visit friends dad’s Italian flat.
-Create a random pop video with friends
-Have a horse riding lesson
-Visit Barcelona to visit a friend
-Go Husky Sledging
-Have a weekend in Brighton to visit the Pavilion
-Present the weather on TV ✔
-Help with Lambing
-Go Champagne Tasting in France (organised)
-Visit New York and go to Woody Allen Jazz bar
-Watch a Rugby Game at Twickenham
-Have a girls weekend at Center Parcs
-Hold a Cheese and Wine night
-Stay in an Igloo hotel
-Have a night out at Monaco Casino
-Attend a Silent Disco
-Have a pampering weekend at Chewton Glen
-Spend a few nights on a sailing yacht watching the stars
-Go to Chelsea Flower Show
-Fly in Debbie’s small plane
-See Beauty and the Beast new film (organised)
-Go for drinks at the top of the Eiffel Tower
-Visit Disney Land Paris
-Fly in a Helicopter
-Go on a cruise
-Hot air balloon ride
-Go on game show