A new bride who thought her tiredness was from months of exhausting wedding planning was devastated to learn, just weeks after returning from her honeymoon, that she had advanced cancer.
In the exciting months leading up to her wedding on 24 September 2016, Kathryn Reffold, 36, of Walthamstow, London, felt fatigued, suffered indigestion and had a pain in her shoulder.
She put the symptoms down to tiredness, caused by wedding planning – not realising she actually had a rare type of cancer called cholangiocarcinoma, which has a high mortality rate.
The advanced form of bile duct cancer has now spread to her bones, lungs and brain.
Kathryn is currently crowdfunding for potentially life-saving treatment in Texas.
By the time Kathryn’s cancer was diagnosed, on 19 October, two weeks after returning from her honeymoon in Malta, it had spread to her bones and lungs.
During an MRI scan in June she learnt it had spread to her brain.
Now, she is fighting for her life. Over the past few months she has lost three stone. She is off sick from work and sleeps for most of the day.
Kathryn has undergone rounds of chemotherapy and thinks her last hope is a “miracle” from a hospital in Texas, but fears she might not be well enough to travel there.
Recounting her story, Kathryn, who became engaged to designer Harry, 33, following a trip to Bali in February 2016, told how a busy life in the capital combined with wedding planning meant she initially didn’t think much of her tiredness.
She was not even especially concerned when, during the summer months of 2016, she developed heartburn and her shoulder ached.
“I was working at an agency,” Kathryn explained. “I’d also been planning my wedding. I didn’t think it was anything more than that. There’s a lot to do, so every bride gets tired.”
On the big day Kathryn felt fine. Around 40 friends watched her marry Harry in a courtyard in Gozo, an island off the coast of Malta.
“I felt well,” she continued. “It was perfect, the best day, intimate, brilliant, my favourite day ever.”
The new bride and groom extended their stay in Malta by a week. But, on returning home, her health took a sudden downwards turn when she started feeling itchy.
“I looked yellow too,” she said.
When the itchiness didn’t go she …
Source:: The Huffington Post – UK Lifestyle