A SCOTS mum-of-two who was diagnosed with stage three cervical cancer has been dealt another devastating blow after discovering the disease has spread.
Rachel Kennedy was diagnosed with stage three cervical cancer in November last year after experiencing abnormal bleeding which she believed was caused by her coil.
The 32-year-old from East Whitburn, West Lothian has now been told that her tumour has grown and spread to both of her lungs.
Following the news, her cancer was restaged to 4b and a treatment plan was put in place, not to cure, but to prolong her life.
Rachel has been documenting her experience on a blog to raise awareness for the disease.
She said that people facing her diagnosis usually have a life expectancy of around 12-17 months.
Her family have now launched a fundraising campaign in order to explore alternative treatments for her stage four cancer.
Two separate fundraising pages have been set up over the weekend for the West Lothian single mum, totaling around £9000.
Loved one Cheryl Macintyre, launched one of the fundraising pages on Saturday ,writing: “As a family we are investing all our time and energy to support Rachel with this diagnosis whilst researching alternative treatments worldwide.
“Unfortunately these treatments are expensive so we have set this page up to help raise money to cover the cost of these treatments and research.
“Additionally we would like to use a proportion of this money for Rachel to treat her 2 wee boys to something special!
“We are, as always, endlessly grateful for all of your support and hope that you can help us find a cure for Rachel. “
Rachel’s been using her Facebook page, Be the Queen of your own Castle, to share the stories of herself and other brave women who are experiencing cervical cancer.
Originally set up in December for friends and family, the page now has over 7,000 followers.
Since her diagnosis, the inspiring mum-of-two has been urging women to book their smear tests and has also promoted the importance of the HPV vaccine, raising awareness so that no other woman has to go through what she has.
At the start of the year, she led the #wearthatdress campaign, a fun movement encouraging people to get dressed up during lockdown and take a picture with the hashtag #wearthatdress.
When someone asked ‘why are you so dressed up today?’ the reply was ‘cervical cancer awareness.’
Her family also raised over £7500 for Maggie’s Cancer Centre after a sponsored 50-mile fun-run.
On 13 February, Rachel wrote: “The CT scan has shown ‘spots’ on my lungs. It is not clear what these spots are yet. But the consultant is confident they are in fact cancerous.
“We were absolutely distraught to hear this news as this would mean secondary cancer and I don’t know very much about secondary cancer, I don’t know if it’s treatable or life limiting. We hugged tight and cried so hard.”
She continued “The lesions on my lungs are cancerous. This is classed as secondary cancer.
“My new staging is 4B. My treatment plan has changed. The lifetime expectancy of someone facing this can range between 12-17 months…
“But I’m ready to fight and explore any alternative treatments that are out there. My family are on the case & they have been such rocks for me through this.
“The boys don’t know they are too young to understand & I’m so grateful that their dad and I are working through this as a team as well. The boys are my everything. As they are to him”
In spite of the devastating news, Rachel has remained positive on her blog.
In her latest post, she shared “Tomorrow is a new day, this being the start of my last week of radiotherapy.
“The countdown is on, six sessions left with my final radiotherapy on Monday 01 March.”.
Rachel’s fundraisers currently sit at £7302 and £2305, respectively. You can donate here.