My husband at the time listened to what the doctor said, went sort of grey and then I sent him home because he was due at work the following day, thinking that they would just keep me in overnight and I’d be fine, they’d be sending me home the following day after they’d given me a blood transfusion. The following morning I had a bone marrow biopsy by a doctor that had never done them before from what I can gather. And then following on from that I was told about three hours later that I’d got acute myeloid leukaemia. I was told on my own, which to me wasn’t a problem but my husband did have a specific issue with that.
And I then told my husband what it was and then my mum and dad, my parents actually turned up at the hospital because I lived about forty, fifty miles away from where they live. They turned up, told them the news and then the consultant came to speak to us and basically told my parents and my husband what he’d already told me, that basically it was treatable. There was no reason why I shouldn’t get over it but basically look forward to six months of disruption.
That reminds me that you said when you were given your diagnosis you were alone.
You didn’t mind being alone for that but your husband wasn’t happy.
My husband wasn’t very happy, no. But I just ratified it to myself that if my husband had said something, I didn’t understand how the consultant could console him when it was me that it affected. So I did understand why he’d told me on my own. And then he sort of sat down with me and explained what they were going to do. And then I said, ‘Right, when my mum and dad come later, my husband, can you explain it all to them as well?’ Which he did. He was very, very good and he explained that to them. And then that’s when my husband said, ‘Why did you tell her when she was alone?’ He said, ‘Well because we can’t.’ You just don’t know how somebody else that’s not affect-, I’m not saying he wasn’t affected by it, but it wasn’t him that they were talking about, it was about me so they couldn’t take on board what he was going to say.
So you think it was actually their decision to do it that way and that it was the right way to do it?
I think it was the right way to do it.
So at least you didn’t have to tell your husband, they did it for you?
I told them what the diagnosis was. And then just said that they were going to get the consultant to come and speak to them as well and me at the same time because you don’t take it in the first time.