This story now
IN People ON 21 Sep, 2015
What would you do when you know you will die? Will you give your hope, your will to live and sit in a corner? 23-year-old Tom Bradshaw is definitely not doing that. Tom is suffering from rare terminal neuroendocrine cancer. His life is slowly slipping away from his hand. But he is making every moment worth.
Tom is all set to marry his childhood girlfriend Chelsea, whom he has a daughter with. Willow, who is just 10 months old, might not even have a little bit of memory of her dad when she grows up. But, Tom doesn't want to leave his daughter like that.
Tom and Chelsea had moved into their new home in Worksop, Nottinghamshire, and they were very much excited about their new life. Just in March Tom, who was suffering acid flux and sickness for two years came to know he had what they call rare neuroendocrine cancer and he didn't have much time in his hand. As it was in his hormones and not blood, it couldn't be diagnosed before.
Just then, Tom had decided to marry Chelsea. They always had the plan to marry each other but as Tom said " The sickness had pushed it forward." They are both planning to get married on October 9. The heart breaking part is, Chelsea is marrying to get widowed. A charity has contributed for them to go to Lanzarote on honeymoon.
Tom is leaving his voice for his daughter. Thomas is recording the bedtime stories in his voice for his daughter so that when he won't be there, her daughter doesn't feel lonely. Those bedtime stories will remain with Willow forever and that would be her dad for her.
Tom, who worked in RAF has voiced out his words which are sure as hell precious. He told, "I went to the GP's about two years ago complaining about reflux every time I drank alcohol or did exercise. I was sick all the time. They sent me for endless tests. They said I had reflux issues. In March this year at Bassettlaw Hospital in Worksop doctors did an ultra scan and they discovered a growth and so they did a CT scan. That's when they learnt I had a rare cancer - neuroendocrine tumours. The cancer is in my hormones and so it didn't show up in my blood. But it was high-grade and fast-acting. It spread from my small bowel to my liver, lungs and now my bones. From the beginning they said it was terminal. That was devastating. I had chemotherapy – that stopped working. "I'm on hormone injections at the moment but they are not curing me. So now I really, really want people who have symptoms they are worried about to go to the doctor, to make sure they are not ignored. "I also want to raise awareness of the cancer I have and the importance of going to see your doctor if you're ill. "
Are we listening? Are we going to act? Or are we going to be another Tom. I hope not. Let's be aware and not give Chelsea's life to the ones we love. Let's read bedtime stories to our daughter and not record it. Tom, we all love you.