As we entered 2018 Yolanda became ill. She had gastro and as she was already weakened by the effects of chemo therapy her tiny almost skeletal body was unable to respond. We did everything we could have done. Kept the fluid intact as high as possible but it seemed as if it had no sooner entered the body then it was exiting. We called the oncology emergency number and got advice from the hospital. Eventually we ended up at the Wilgeheuwel emergency rooms. Her CRP numbers were up and we were immediately referred to get Yolanda admitted in “our” hospital. I drove her to Wits Donald Gordon not knowing that this would be our last journey in a car together.

Yolanda was admitted and immediately put under the care of a specialist physician. The gastro however never stopped. I left her there that evening believing that this was just another bump in the road in our journey of dealing with cancer.

The week ahead was to become one of my toughest paths I have had to walk on my life journey. Yolanda was getting weaker by the day and little did I realise that she was disappearing before my eyes. We however remained hopeful that we would overcome this obstacle in our path. Looking back on this time I am grateful that we never lost hope, as hope gave us the strength to continue the fight. Each time I saw the doctor at the hospital the news got worse.

I was never sure how to convey this to Yolanda or our two daughters. I however could never hide my emotions and always have worn my feelings openly on my sleeve. I am also grateful for this approach as I feel it allows for an open and honest discussion with my daughters.

The cancer had spread and as an evil invader it had taken the opportunity of a weakened defense system in order to rob Yolanda of her life. The cancer not only robbed Yolanda of her life but it invaded our family. It took away a daughter, sister, friend, wife and most of all a loving caring mother to my daughters.

It all seems so unreal. We have many unanswered questions. We have many what if’s. What we really have is a huge loss and pain to face daily.