Bereaved Story

“She had three hospital admissions in eight weeks and it wasn’t until the final admission via A&E that she was diagnosed”

Michelle Beer tells us all about her fantastic mum and nana, Diane. Read more below.

Diane Leach

My mum was an absolute fantastic mum and nana. She worked as a nurse for many years and always had great nursing stories, although I’m not sure I’m still over the gory stories whilst eating my Sunday dinner as a teenager.

Mum had always had tummy issues due to Crohn’s disease, so when she started to need to go to the toilet urgently, and in the last couple of years of her life, having regular accidents, it was always put down to the Crohn’s or a possible intolerance to dairy products. She went to the doctors for a long time about the accidents, and at one point, it was even blamed on me and my brother being big babies and her having to have forceps deliveries with us both. We were well around the 40’s mark by then!

Around Christmas time of 2017, mum had worked a night shift, and I remember her getting home from work and telling me that she had had the most awful back pain, and the only way she could ease it was to lay on the floor. She passed it off as being in her mid-sixties and still working in nursing, so she vowed to find a new job.

Christmas came and went and she found a new job but the symptoms of accidents, feeling full quickly and sick started to make themselves known on a far more regular basis. The GP thought it was either her Crohn’s or kidney-related but both were quickly ruled out. But she started to struggle and was getting tired, went off food and just became unhappy because she felt rotten (knowing what I know now, she hid from us all really well how poorly she actually felt).

She had three hospital admissions in eight weeks and it wasn’t until the final admission via A&E that she was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Even in the hospital, she tried to keep on a cheerful front, especially if my twin sons (who were her world), came with me for a visit. But her decline was very quick. She wanted to go home, which was managed with carers for about a week, but then she was given a space in the local hospice where she battled on for another few days. My mum lost her battle to pancreatic cancer, 42 days after diagnosis.

Diane Leach