Health

Melbourne mum-of-two with terminal brain cancer writes a heartbreaking letter to her children

“Heartbroken doesn’t come close to describing the pain I feel at not being in your lives in the future…”
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A Melbourne mum-of-two who was recently diagnosed with brain cancer has shared a heartbreaking letter with her family.

After beating brain cancer eight years ago, Sara Chivers, 34, was told in March her brain tumour had returned and it’s terminal. Doctors discovered three tumours had grown on the brain and they were inoperable and incurable.

However, in possibly one of the cruelest twists of fate, just four weeks ago, it was discovered Sara’s youngest son, 18-month-old Alfie, had a tumour on his brain the size of a pear. Alfie’s cancer is different to his mum’s; yet, it’s malignant, aggressive and terminal.

It’s a situation that doctors say is as rare as lightening striking twice.

In the letter published by the New Daily, Sara begins by describing her personality to her two young sons.

“I won’t be around to see you grow up. It’s a hard thing to say and even harder to face,” she writes. “You will have to hear from others the little things that made me me: my perfume of choice is Michael Kors, my favourite meal is spaghetti bolognese, winter is my preferred season. I wish I was a better cook. I’m a keeper of mementos – tiny hospital name tags, the poem Leigh wrote for my 21st birthday, first baby clothes.”

She goes on to provide a guide of sorts for her young children, emphasising little things — the importance of table manners and addressing friends’ parents by Mrs, Ms or Mr — before launching into important life lessons.

“Love hard. As they say, it is better to have loved and lost, than never to have loved at all. That’s how I feel about you both,” she writes. “Heartbroken doesn’t come close to describing the pain I feel at not being in your lives in the future, but I would never change or forego the time we have spent together and the immense joy you have brought me. You are without a doubt my proudest accomplishments.”

“Always try your best; I could never ask any more of you. Never fear failure – you will learn more from mistakes than successes. There’s never anything more certain than change so embrace it. Don’t be afraid to try new things. Travel as much as possible – it will shape who you are.”

Sara finishes the note with a few words about her lovingly husband Leigh, who she describes as “admirable” and “courageous.”

“It won’t be easy for him raising you alone, but every decision he makes will be with your best interests at heart. He is an exceptional father and role model. Don’t let him doubt himself or the wonderful job he will do shaping you into the men I dream of you growing up to be.”

“Your Dad is the most admirable, courageous man I have ever known. He is my companion, my rock, my everything, she writes. “He has shown true grit in the face of our adversities, and without him beside me I would have crumbled.”

She adds: “I will be forever grateful for the time we spent together, the memories we created, the love we shared. It was always him. Always will be.”

Since the return of Sara’s tumour, she has been receiving treatment to buy her as much time as possible to help Alfie fight his cancer. She says she won’t let him become a statistic.

If you wish to donate to help find a cure for brain cancer, Sara has set up a donation page here.

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