Baking helped Jackie move forward after her breast cancer diagnosis. She'll be taking part and selling her cakes in an Afternoon Tea this month.
I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2014. I had worn a new bra that dug into me at work. When I took it off at home and checked the area that had been rubbing, I found a lump.
I remember walking along the corridor at my initial appointment saying to my husband, ‘this is cancer’. When my worst fears were confirmed, my whole world fell apart.
I had chemotherapy, a lumpectomy, lymph node removal and radiotherapy. I already had some underlying health issues with a bad back, but after my surgery I was left with limited mobility, a painful shoulder and lymphoedema. I also experienced fatigue, depression and anxiety.
My whole life changed because of my breast cancer. I work in the NHS, and it took two years from my diagnosis to decide that I wasn’t well enough to return to my job. I took ill health retirement.
A career advisor mentioned ‘if you’re good at something, why not give it a go?’ I joked that I was good at baking. I’ve been making cakes for over 40 years.
I decided to approach some catering vans to see if they would be interested in me making some cakes. I’ve set up Liberty Bakes, and despite being limited on how much I am able to do, I still enjoy baking.
I saw the advert for Afternoon Tea and thought, I’d like to do that. My three daughters are going to help me. I’m looking forward to making lots of lovely food to share and having an afternoon of chatter, all the while raising much needed funds and awareness.
Be part of something exciting this July. Join us for an Afternoon Tea and help support people with breast cancer.