I knew ovarian cancer existed but it wasn't really on my radar in the same way, say, breast cancer is - and I made a fair few assumptions about it. Surely my yearly cervical smear would take care of everything 'down there', right? Wrong. Smear tests detect cancer of the, well, the cervix. Turns out there are lots of other gynaecological cancers too.
There are certain realities you have to face when you have a cancer diagnosis. Life is never going to be quite the same again. Chemotherapy saps your strength and energy levels and the radiotherapy is sore long after you leave the unit, but worse than the treatment itself, for many women, is the hair loss.
I have never had breast cancer. I have watched 2 of the people I love most die of breast cancer. I had a double mastectomy to avoid it. I wasn't sure that i would know what to say but I of course said yes. I'm really glad I did say yes.
When I get up on a morning now, everyone is still asleep. I get up in silence, creep around the house getting ready for my run before returning, showering, and getting ready for work as quietly as possible. I walk through the door on an evening now and I see and hear nobody. It's silent.
I remember wanting to find someone like me. Some one who was in my situation. I wanted to know if we thought the same things, if we felt the same way. Did other people worry about what I worried about? Where they more confident in their decision making?
At the diagnosis appointment my surgeon went straight on to suggest a mastectomy followed by a stomach tuck to reconstruct a new breast, and explained how they'd have to reduce the other breast as I was fairly well endowed and it was unlikely they could reconstruct to match.
This group has been invaluable in helping me come to terms with my post-surgery body. Being part of this community I know I am not "militant" as one of the hospital nurses described me, but just a woman who was absolute in her resolve to avoid any additional surgery. For me, getting back to normal life after cancer is not about getting a new breast but getting as healthy as possible, as quickly as possible. The truth is I have lost my breast to cancer and no surgery will replace it.
Together, we must fund relentlessly, collaborate profusely and campaign effectively until breast cancer ceases to take the lives of the women that we love. Our promise is to tackle the disease from all angles: to prevent it developing, to detect it earlier and to improve the quality of treatment and services for women living with it.
Female breasts, depicted in a non-sexual way, by a female artist, are not allowed. In other words, if women's breasts and nipples are not in service to babies or men, or have not suffered cancer, if they simply exist on a woman's body, they must be covered.
I have spent the past 10 days in hospitals on the edge of London away from home and my darling children, unfortunately declining swiftly. The infection that rendered me low meant that my liver cannot continue to fight the cancer and there is nothing that can be done and I have been told there are now only palliative options for me.
The first six months of this new Government's term will therefore be crucial in shaping the country's ability to support and treat breast cancer patients, and we look forward with much hope to the outcomes, the commitments and, eventually, the fruit of this work.
As a rapidly-evolving field of medicine, genetic analysis relies on the sharing and pooling of data so that experts can learn more about the complex variations in the human genome which contribute to disease risk or mutation.
The other main reason I love the show is that at its core is a marriage characterised by true love and partnership. In Series 1 we find out how Snow White fell in love with and married her Prince Charming. Their true love is key to saving the day on more than one occasion.
While I was was on chemo, the project seemed entirely manageable. It was broken down into small chunks. All I had to do was get through the current cycle, then the next scan. But as of this morning I am officially on a chemo break.
The day got worse when I learned that my platelet levels had reached an all-time low and I wasn't able to have my chemo. Instead I had platelet transfusion and I will see my oncologist tomorrow to discuss how we go forward from here, as the chemo is clearly battering me.
Here's the lesson - pay it forward. It needn't take time or money. And you may be very grateful down the line when you, in turn, need support. I am trying to live this philosophy, even in the smallest of ways. I try not to pass a charity box without making a small donation. If someone asks for my vote in some random competition, I try to vote for them. And as for the General Election - well, we shall see.