Angus and Phoebe: The Same Cancer, Five Years Apart – Teenage Cancer Gigs 2019

Angus and Phoebe: The Same Cancer, Five Years Apart – Teenage Cancer Gigs 2019


Angus was a 14 year old boy that went into a child’s unit. He wasn’t really a child though he was under 18. He was still a teenager. He had it so hard. All the side
effects you can think of, he had. It hit him and he was in hospital a lot. I think I went quite in on myself,
I don’t think I was my same… I wasn’t the same as I normally am. There was no one else there sort of my age, so I just spent all my time on my own really. He was in a room with a nursery rhyme frieze and a mobile over his head
with ducks dangling on it. It wasn’t ideal for…
for a, y’know, a teenager to be on a children’s ward. Simple things like the bed just wasn’t big enough. It wasn’t really the right place for him. He had steroid treatment which,
um, destroyed his hips and he had to have both his hips replaced. He didn’t want to communicate with anyone, he didn’t want to show any emotion. He lost out on the mixing with people
stage of his teenage years. The treatment that he received, I cannot fault, but it would have been a much different experience
if he had been on a Teenage Cancer Trust ward. She’d just started uni and I thought it
might be a bit of a stress related thing. My sixth sense knew that that’s what
it was going to turn out to be with Phoebe. She was just, she just looked horrendous and I just… this sort of seed
of doubt was starting to hit me. I didn’t think it was even sort of possible that we could get the same cancer. When we saw the consultant early on, he said he thought it was something
like a one in a billion chance of them having the same cancer in the same family. I don’t have the words to describe how I feel about the fact that they’ve both had it. It’s been with us for 10 years now. I think, as a family, we’ve missed out on a huge amount. Family holidays and experiences,
we’ll never, never get that back. You have to just get on with it and… and cope with what you’ve been dealt with. Cos you just don’t know what’s around the corner. Phoebe’s had a very different experience. She has had the same cancer as her brother, but being treated on the Teenage Cancer Trust ward has been a whole new experience
for us as a family. It’s unlikely that young people will meet somebody else who’s been through a similar life-threatening experience. It’s quite incredible, when you look at that family, just how amazing they are and how together they are with everything they’ve had to deal with. The staff are like friends now. They know you so well. They talk to you like you’re an adult, they talk to you about things you watch on TV. Everyone on this ward is more my age. You get to bond with people
over the things you’re going through. My sister’s got sort of lifelong friends now. If it had been there for Angus, it certainly would have made his treatment happier and, uh, a nicer thing to go through. You get to know them so that
you can develop a care plan that is gonna be most effective for that individual. If you’ve got to be in that situation,
then there’s no better place to be than the Teenage Cancer Trust ward. If you’ve got to go through it, then you’ve gotta make it the best you can. And this is the best place for it to be, to be the best. Right now, Teenage Cancer Trust
cannot reach every young person with cancer. Please text REACH to donate £5.