Breast Cancer Survivor Gives An Important Message

Great Comeback 3

An Oldham woman, whose world fell apart when she was diagnosed with breast cancer just five months after giving birth to her third child, wants to give an important message about checking for lumps.

Carla Clee, from Saddleworth, was having a harmless joke with a friend when she discovered a lump under her arm, a moment that would later save her life.

She said: “One day I rolled my shoulders back after my friend and I were laughing at my bad posture. 

“Lying within my armpit was a lump. Like a kid's bouncy ball you get in party bags.

“From rolling my shoulders back and sitting up straight, it popped out. My breast-feeding boobs knew that this was not milk and was indeed an uninvited visitor.”

The 37-year-old was diagnosed with secondary breast cancer in her lymph nodes and immediately started a six month course of chemotherapy, followed by an operation, three weeks of daily radiotherapy and physiotherapy.

She now wants to share an important message to everyone to check their boobs, armpits and everywhere else for lumps, and continued: "No lump is too small. You can never be too careful. And if there is anything sinister you must act quickly as this really can impact what happens.

“I didn't feel unwell in the slightest; it came as a massive shock.

“I remained positive throughout and although I had young children to look after, which any mum knows is exhausting, they also kept me going.”

Carla joined thousands of people at a running celebration in the heart of Manchester last May, as she took on the Simplyhealth Great Manchester Run 10k for Mummy's Star, where she raised over £1,300.

The Glossop-based charity is the only one in the UK and Ireland dedicated to women and their families affected by cancer during pregnancy or shortly after a birth. They currently support more than 500 women nationally.

She continued: “I really couldn't have done it without their support. We need to make people aware that this wonderful charity exists.

“If this has taught me anything it is to appreciate EVERYTHING in life.

“Feel the rain on your face, throw a snowball at your kids, make a slide out of the sofa cushions, soak up the sun and don't get annoyed if you have to let another car through when it's your road.

“Wave, smile, sing, enjoy, giggle, wiggle, laugh and LOVE! Enjoy Life. We only get one and it is not a rehearsal.”

The Simplyhealth Great Manchester Run includes a half marathon, Junior and Mini events and the UKs biggest 10K run, which welcomes people of all ages and abilities to a running celebration in the heart of the city centre.

Do something to show them what you're made of and enter the Simplyhealth Great Manchester Run