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Coldean teenager describes her three-year battle against cancer
A teenager has spoken courageously about her three-year battle with cancer and her experience of the “horrible side of life”.
Jessica-Jayde Allen was just 15 when she learned she had the rare malignant tumour Ewing’s Sarcoma. After being given the all-clear 18 months ago, the 18 year old was heartbroken to learn the cancer had returned.
She said having cancer had become “normal” and had taught her “life is tough”.
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Jessica-Jayde, of Coldean, said: “I was 15 and living life as a normal teenage girl, going to school and preparing for my GCSEs.
“But from the moment that I was diagnosed, everything changed.”
After a lump developed on her collarbone doctors sent her for an X-ray.
She said: “My heart started beating so fast, my hands were shaking and I came over dizzy. It was like an actual nightmare that I was just about to wake up from. Evidently not.”
At the Royal Marsden cancer hospital her fears were confirmed: “I sat there, shocked and confused.
“I was in fear of what the future would hold and it took two words to feel like the world was against me. Two words that changed my life: ‘It’s cancer’.”
She has since completed 15 rounds of chemotherapy and had daily radiotherapy for weeks, leaving her sick, weak and prone to infections and broken bones.
She also had to deal with losing her hair: “I did everything I could to keep my hair but in the end, I understood that things had to get worse before they could get better and I just had to be strong.”
In July 2012 she learnt her cancer was no longer active. But in October 2013 another lump appeared and her “whole life came crashing down, for a second time”.
This time doctors will operate and snap her collar bone to get to the tumour. She added: “I was heartbroken and couldn’t believe that I was going to have to go through it again.
“I’ve now become used to this horrible side of life. To me, it’s normal to go up to the hospital and see hairless children. It’s normal to me that I have cancer.”
A fundraising event to help Jessica-Jayde pay her travel costs for further treatment is being held at Whitehawk Football Club from 7.30pm on February 22.
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