Jodie Mason's diagnosis of skin cancer three years ago has changed her life. In the space of a year she had Georgie, got married and made the decision not to have any more children.

Jodie Mason, daughter Georgie and husband Jon

Jodie Mason, daughter Georgie and husband Jon

But, thankfully she is currently well and looking to the future . Three years ago, while pregnant with Georgie, Jodie found a mole on her back. She went to her GP several times but was told it was just hormones causing changes in her body.

However, after Georgie was born in February 2013, the mole was much bigger and had started to blister and weep. She returned to the GP and asked him to remove the mole. Two weeks later she was called back and told she had stage three malignant melanoma.

"I was in total shock," said Jodie. "A professor told me it 'didn't look good'. I went into a blind panic. Georgie was three months old and all I could think was that she was going to grow up without her mum and that my partner, Jon, faced the prospect of being left alone with a new-born."

Jodie, 37, a marketing expert and Jon, threw themselves into a frenzy of information gathering via the Cancer Research UK website. And they sought a second medical opinion.

This time the consultant was more reassuring, he carried out a wide local incision to remove any margins of the cancer and, in a second operation, took out all the lymph nodes under her right arm.

Jodie had never been keen to get married - she was happy as she was and didn't want the stress of organising a wedding. But her cancer experience prompted her and Jon to tie the knot. They organised the wedding in five weeks and were married in September, a week after Jodie was told she was cancer-free.

They also took the difficult decision not to have any more children.

Jodie said: "I would have liked a second child and that's what we had planned. But the cancer changed that. There is no proven link between pregnancy and cancer, I know that, but we decided we wanted to limit any possible risk of recurrence, so we made the decision not to have any more.

"Cancer is a beast of a disease. It is absolutely terrifying and you are powerless once you have it. I'm a control freak but there was nothing I could do about it. I ate reasonably well, I exercised, and I didn't drink heavily. But this was out of my control.

"In my darkest hours, I would be up in the night, feeding my gorgeous little squidgy baby and very frightened about what the future held for us.

"Georgie is a red-head too, so is at extra risk from the sun."

Jodie found a second lump in summer 2014, which was confirmed as melanoma. It was swiftly removed and since then she has been well. She is closely monitored and goes for regular scans and checks.

" I do get 'scanxiety' when the tests are coming up," said Jodie . "I don't think about it every day but I'm sensible, I've improved my lifestyle and I keep my fingers crossed. On the whole, I feel I have been one of the lucky ones.

"It's made me appreciate that life is so precious. It's made me want to grab hold of every opportunity it presents. And it's made me even more thankful for the wonderful friends, the best mum and family and the most amazing husband and little girl I have in my life and to cherish every moment I share with each of them.

"So, if the scientists and doctors can just keep on top of it and keep cutting any lumps out, that will be amazing".

Jodie is supporting Stand Up To Cancer, a joint national fundraising campaign from Cancer Research UK and Channel 4 to accelerate new cancer treatments to patients and save more lives. To get involved this October and help beat cancer sooner, visit standuptocancer.org.uk

Jodie, who runs her marketing business under her maiden name J Wickers Consulting, is well aware that the money raised through donations and purchases from Cancer Research UK shops like the Weybridge one, help fund life-saving treatment.

She and Georgie have also taken part in several Cancer Research UK Race for Life events.


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