Working as a clinical matron in a busy hospital, Sarah Budden spends most of her day caring for others but when her dad, Dave, was diagnosed with lung cancer, she found it very difficult to juggle her roles of nurse and daughter:
“As a nurse, I still feel that I didn’t look after my dad well enough. Watching dad have to endure what he did broke my heart. I didn’t want to be a nurse. I wanted to be his daughter.
“I was his go to person. In the July before he died, he had a growth on his back. I made him go to the doctors and that was the start of it.
“Dad struggled to accept what was happening to him. He was angry and scared and became quite withdrawn. He had a couple of cycles of chemotherapy but was hospitalised twice and then also diagnosed with COPD. For the last month, he couldn’t really eat. It was heart breaking to watch him go through it.
“When he was diagnosed, he was given nine months to live. He died in just over four.
I will always wish there was more that could have been done for him. If it had been caught earlier, then maybe he would have had more of a chance. I know first hand that people can beat lung cancer; my friend Julie did.Sarah understands the importance of early detection for lung cancer
“I remember this one day with dad. We were on our way to Barnstaple Hospital for his chemo. We were just sat next to each other, not talking, not asking questions. We were just comfortable in the silence, at peace. It didn’t happen very often. It was such a tense time but that moment together was precious.
“I will always wish there was more that could have been done for him. If it had been caught earlier, then maybe he would have had more of a chance. I know first hand that people can beat lung cancer; my friend Julie did.
“Julie was 48, fit and well, when suddenly she was diagnosed with extensive lung cancer. Her family prepared for the worst. However, her treatment, coupled with the devotion and support of her partner and daughter and, most of all, an amazing inner strength and positive outlook, Julie had some amazing news. She was told there was no evidence of the disease.
“Julie’s life has changed. She isn’t as fit as she was and she cannot do the job she once did but she is eternally grateful to just be alive.
“It is for both these people that I will take to roads of London on Sunday in support of Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation. Two remarkable people with two extremely different experiences. A high five for Julie and in memory of my wonderful dad.”