Woman, 34, diagnosed with incurable cancer usually found in over 65s

Kerry Williams knew that something just wasn't right with her own body. The fatigue she felt was simply not normal.

Kerry Williams has a rare blood cancer, and is urging people to see a doctor if they feel anything seems wrong
Kerry Williams has a rare blood cancer, and is urging people to see a doctor if they feel anything seems wrong

But she could never had expected that her diagnosis would be so earth shattering.

The 34-year-old from Apley, Telford, was told that she had a rare and incurable blood cancer, usually found in people over the age of 65.

But while incurable, haematologists at the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital were quick to reassure Kerry that her cancer is treatable and she is moving forward in what she calls "this new chapter in my life".

She and partner, Andy Blunt, have brought forward their marriage to next month but Kerry is determined that, once her chemotherapy is complete they will have the wedding of their dreams that they had planned.

Last week Kerry and her lifelong best friend, Lisa Wilson, had cancer ribbon tattoos created for them by artist, Lee Burrell, who organised a day-long fundraising ribbon tattoo event on Sunday.

Kerry is now urging everyone who might be putting off seeking medical help and advice to pick up the phone.

"I just knew that something was going wrong with my body. Then one day I said to Andy that the fatigue was dreadful and he asked me to ring 111," she said.

That phone call led to tests and the eventual diagnosis five weeks ago.

"The doctors sat myself and my partner down and we looked at each other and thought 'This isn't good is it". They sat us down and said they thought I might have multiple myeloma and that, while it is incurable it is treatable."

Kerry with her best friend Lisa Wilson

A bone marrow biopsy, with two centimetres of bone and bone marrow were taken from Kerry's thigh under local anaesthetic, confirmed the diagnosis.

"The biopsy was fascinating, seeing my bone in a tube. And to be fair, it was the anaesthetic that was the worst part," she said.

Now a full treatment plan for Kerry is being drawn up, with chemotherapy and stem cell treatment included.

She added: "We have brought forward our marriage and will have a beautiful little marriage in February. But, once the treatment is over we will have the wedding that we have planned and will renew our vows. I am keeping my wedding dress for that day so it means I get to choose a new outfit."

Kerry said her main fear with chemotherapy had been the loss of her auburn hair.

"I am a proper red head and I think for a lot of women our hair is part of our identity. But my wonderful hairdressers has assured me that whatever happens she and the team will be there for me.

"The support network around me is just amazing.

"Andy is wonderful. His sister is now 20 years in remission from leukaemia and now he is having to deal with me.

"I have incredible friends who I know will be there for me in the bad times as well as the dark times. We know that there are going to be dark times but I just think that this is my life now, it is just another chapter to my story and we will get through this, however long it takes."

"My employers have also been fantastic."

Now Kerry wants to use her own journey to make people aware that they should seek help and advice if they are worried about their health.

"It has been such a tough couple of years with Covid and I am sure that many many people have put off doing something about usual lumps and bumps or just the feeling that there is something wrong. I knew my body and I knew that it wasn't right.

"If you are worried please seek help, contact the GP or ring 111. The brilliant people at haematology at the RSH are stressing that throughout Covid, they are still there for cancer."

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