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Teddy/Dolly & Chemo Duck 'Daisy's' Bold Beanies Cancer Hat!

Posted by Emilienne Rebel on

Teddy/Dolly & Chemo Duck 'Daisy's' Bold Beanies Cancer Hat!

It was such pleasure to make a special matching animal print Bold Beanie cancer hair loss hat for Melissa's new 'Chemo Duck' Daisy

"So we got home from her admission for chemo and the teddy hat was there! Thank you so so much. She loves it and was thrilled with the card too. Here she is with daisy her chemo duck (all the kids get one of these ducks which comes with its own central line!)"... sent from Melissa's mum.

I think its great that the kids get a teddy with a central line (to deliver chemotherapy) and its the reason I started making the matching Teddy/Dolly Bold Beanies, as being able to role-play can greatly help a child reduce anxiety and fear for whatever it is they are facing... in this case chemo infusions and hair loss.

Melissa has the matching headwear and requested the teddy Bold Beanie to match. Please do always ask if there is something you can't see on the website... especially if it could make a child smile.

Keep smiling beautiful Melissa, you have a magical sunshine smile and you are totally amazing! Thank you for allowing me to share your photo & smile with other kids.

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Comfy Cotton Pretty Cancer Hats - re-stocks daily!

Posted by Emilienne Rebel on

Comfy Cotton Pretty Cancer Hats - re-stocks daily!

Re-stocks daily of our super-soft comfy cotton chemo headwear

The soft and stretchy multi-use chemo cap is perfect for you! Made from natural cotton fabric and designed for those looking for a simple, everyday casual and easy head covering.

Sometimes you might want a simple, easy cancer cap to wear around the house or while you are exercising (a natural soft, snug yoga hat for example). Because we use only high-quality fabrics, the cap will not slip and can easily be layered with other scarves or hats. 

This cap is attractive enough to wear when you are out for a casual day shopping or running errands. It also makes a nice cozy sleep cap!
Our hair loss headwear is sustainably made here in the UK by a small highly skilled team. We source all our high quality fabrics here in the UK including the iconic Liberty Printed fabrics. Buying local ensures a minimum carbon footprint and keeps skilled women (in this case) in business and earning a wage.
Overstocking can cause any small business to fail so we are constantly restocking our cancer hats, scarves, head-wraps and other unique chemo gifts in smaller batches. 
 
We are also looking to develop another range of eco products using dead-stock fabrics, in turn reducing our carbon footprint further and making good use of existing resources that may otherwise be discarded to landfill. We don't waste anything. Our packing is also biodegradable and or recyclable.
#hairloss #boldbeanies #ecofashion #cancerhat #chemohat #alopecia #madeinUK

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Unacceptable Delays in Diagnosing Secondary Breast Cancer

Posted by Emilienne Rebel on

Unacceptable Delays in Diagnosing Secondary Breast Cancer

One in four patients with secondary breast cancer had to visit their GP three or more times before they got a diagnosis, a survey suggests

A breast cancer charity said there should be more awareness that the disease can spread to other parts of the body.

From a recent BBC News article : 

GPs said they were doing their best for patients but symptoms could be difficult to spot.

In the UK, 35,000 people are living with the incurable form of the disease.

Breast Cancer Now said it was "unacceptable" that some people whose cancer had spread were not getting early access to treatments which could alleviate symptoms and improve their quality of life.

"For too long now, the worrying perception that everyone survives breast cancer has masked the heartbreaking reality for 11,500 families in the UK that lose someone they love each year," the charity said

The advanced, or metastatic form of the disease means the cancer has spread through the blood and created secondary tumours in the bones, liver, lung or brain.

It cannot be cured and patients stay in treatment for the rest of their lives.

'I felt stupid and naive'

Jo Myatt, 43, from Chorley, went to see her GP five times over a number of years before discovering that breast cancer had spread to her liver and bones.

"I felt like a hypochondriac for going all the time," she says.

Her symptoms started with missed periods and nausea before becoming more serious and persistent, leaving her unable to move her neck.

But no-one had mentioned secondary breast cancer as a possibility when she was diagnosed 10 years previously.

"I was devastated. I felt stupid and naive," Jo says.

People don't realise it can spread to other areas of the body and you can have nothing in your breast."

Jo is now on her fourth treatment and waiting anxiously for the results of her latest scans.

She knows she is eventually going to run out of options, but she urges other women to speak up.

"If you're worried about pain, make doctors aware of your history.

"You're not going mad - the sooner you find the secondary, the better health you're going to be in and the more it can be contained."

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My cancer story, twelve years on... Lotte is now a teenager!

Posted by Emilienne Rebel on

My cancer story, twelve years on... Lotte is now a teenager!

Olivia was 3 years old and Lotte just 7 months old (still being breastfed) that fateful Wednesday twelve years ago when I was told I had cancer. My 'Cancer Journey' is very much linked to my children and being a mum 

Joking with the Breast Surgeon that I hadn't come to my appointment to get the results of the previous week's biopsy on my own... I had the baby with me! I had found the pea-sized hard lump under the skin whilst breast feeding and knew this wasn't 'my normal'... but still I wasn't really worried. I had no family history, I was not overweight, I'd never smoked, drank little, vegetarian and breast fed both my babies... couldn't be anything right? Wrong.

Investigations, lumpectomy and lymph node removal and various scans proved the cancer was aggressive... I had Grade 3 advanced Breast Cancer. Without intensive and immediate action my life was in danger and I wouldn't get to be a part of my children's lives; I wouldn't get to be their mummy. The worst thought for me personally was that they were too young to remember me. 

I had to do everything I could to ensure every year possible... to get to an age where they would remember me... feel my love for them and know how precious they were to me. I repeat, my cancer journey' is very much linked to my children.  

Twelve years ago this weekend just gone Lotte had her 1st birthday and whilst I was too ill to arrange a party for her we started our new tradition of 'Birthday Breakfast' and I vowed to make every other birthday very memorable for them.

I had my second chemotherapy infusion on that day at home. My hair had already started to fall and I'd shaved it in preparation. Quite a traumatic experience and I with hindsight urge any woman needing to shave her head to entrust this to someone they trust and is very sympathetic, whomever that may be (which may not be the obvious choice).

Losing my hair with Chemo whilst it was difficult to deal with at the time with my young family. I looked very ill. I lost the hair on my head and all over, including my eyebrows and eyelashes and combined with the bloating from the steroids, I looked very different.

My hair loss however set me on a path to start my business Bold Beanies and make a range of cancer alopecia headwear and gifts to make a terrible situation a little bit more bearable. I designed them with younger cancer patients in mind with an emphasis on style as well and for comfort and ease. 

I was unable to lift my arms for long after my mastectomy and lymph node removal and therefore tying traditional headscarves was too difficult for me. I needed something soft and simple to slip on and get on looking after my children. I also felt incredibly cold at night. The wooly beanie hat I wore was itchy and often got too hot, so I would take it off and then I would get cold quickly. My chemo headwear needed to be made from thin natural cotton material, soft, stretchy, breathable and temperature controlling. Its so much easier to face the side effects of cancer when you're able to get a good nights sleep. 

Having received a lot of flowers by post from well meaning friends and family, I also felt it very important to provide gift solutions for cancer patients, helping those around them feel less helpless. 

With every year that passes I gain strength in the bond I have with my girls. I teach them, I guide them to grow into confident young women who very much know they are loved whether I am with them or not.

Whilst I continue to battle with making my life count, battling the feelings of borrowed time, a bucket list of dreams and the normalities of being a single parent with a growing business and people in my life who are determined to make it harder than it needs to be... I hope that others who are at the start of their story with cancer that they get some comfort from my 12 years... sharing the positive stories is so important. I'm still here and enjoy every day with my children and look forward to the exciting times in their lives that I get to be a part of. 

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10 Things Your Friend with Metastatic Breast Cancer Need You to Understand Now

Posted by Emilienne Rebel on

10 Things Your Friend with Metastatic Breast Cancer Need You to Understand Now

Thank you Wildfire Magazine for another informative & sensitive article... I have a few friends who would agree

"Being metastatic is just awful luck, not something a person did or didn't do" - and 9 other things the MBC community wants you to know.

Excerpt from Article: 

If you're like me, you like concrete how-tos, clear directions, tried and true recipes, do this not that, that sort of thing. There is nothing so frustrating as wanting a map of a new place and not having one. That's how I have felt the last several years when it comes to breast cancer awareness and Metastatic Breast Cancer. I want to know specifically how to be a good friend to those with MBC.

Lacking the map, I've decided to simply ask. So, recently I've spent a lot of time talking to women with MBC, asking how I -- an early stager -- can support & advocate for women in the breast cancer community whom have been diagnosed Stage IV. The women I talked to were very happy to help me and now I have for you (and me) this list.

1. Being metastatic is just awful luck, not something a person did or didn't do. Many with metastatic breast cancer are diagnosed de novo metastatic, which means some men and women are diagnosed with Stage IV breast cancer from their first diagnosis of breast cancer.

2. People with Stage IV are mentally in a different space than early stagers. "If I seem insensitive to an early stager's experience, it's because I'm over here preparing my young children for my death. While an early stager puts treatment behind them, I'm pleading for my treatment to just last another 6 months. And while an early stager is posting all about how hard of a year they've had, but then it's over and everyone is dressing in pink and dropping off casseroles and walking in their honor on Mother's Day, I'm over here drowning. All of my old friends have forgotten me, all of my metastatic friends who "get it" have died. And no one has brought me a casserole or asked how I'm doing in months."

3. Don't buy people with MBC pink stuff. Most don't identify with the "pink" crowd. Instead, spread awareness for Stage IV and the fact that 116 with MBC die each day.

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