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In April 2012 I was diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer.  This came as a massive shock, you really do feel suddenly that life could so easily be snatched away from you.  Those first few hours after receiving the news you seem to drift into a place of total isolation and you can’t help but feel that this is going to be a massive challenge not only for me but for my family and friends.

I was lucky to meet a truly fantastically gifted surgeon and quite honestly just a great all round guy ‘Neil Pearce’ whilst his bedside manner left a little bit to be desired (ref this point later in the story). After undergoing a PET scan Neil suggested the best course of action was to undergo a surgical procedure called a Whipples, followed by 6 months of chemo, the whole thing just got REAL right there and then.

May 2012 I was admitted and the operation took place.  10.5 hrs of surgery according to Neil and what was left of the pancreas was quite soft and difficult to reattach to get a blood supply to it. I spent the next 6 day in various wards when Neil (bedside manner at the top of his game) said ‘Inkpen’ what you still doing here I need this bed, get your arse out of here’.

The road to recovery was a lonely place as everything you used to do you just can’t do anymore, you just sleep, drink, no interest in food at all. But you are alive and you’re in with a chance to fight and come through this dark time. You tell yourself you need to be positive think of a strategy give yourself a goal to aim for and never give in. I had amazing support from my family my parents my daughters were there for me and partner Julie was simply amazing.

My goal – I had to get back to cycling I desperately wanted to go with the boys on the Bueane Challenge in September 12 and despite midway through my chemo I cycled 120 miles I was awarded ‘Spirit of the challenge’. This was my focus and has been ever since my recovery so what can I do to say thanks to Neil and his team – well it was a no brainer for me as I jumped at the chance to join the PLANETS LP24 team and my brother and mates will be there in June – Can’t wait…..

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