Midlothian mother and daughter both diagnosed with breast cancer within a week of each other

Pair went through treatment together, even being seen by the same oncologist in Edinburgh
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A Midlothian mother and daughter, who were diagnosed with breast cancer within a week of each other, have shared their experience of going through treatment side by side.

In December 2021, Angela Jones, 60, was diagnosed with grade two, stage two breast cancer after a mammogram. Prior to her diagnosis, her daughter Mary, 32, had found a lump in her own breast that she was told on two separate occasions was a cyst. Yet, when she went for a scan following her mum’s diagnosis, Mary was told that she also had breast cancer.

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Mary, who lived in Kenya, said: “Both our worlds were thrown upside down and set on fire.”

Angela Jones, 60 and daughter Mary, 32, were both told they had the cancer in 2021.Angela Jones, 60 and daughter Mary, 32, were both told they had the cancer in 2021.
Angela Jones, 60 and daughter Mary, 32, were both told they had the cancer in 2021.

Angela said learning her daughter had the cancer was more of a shock than her own diagnosis. “It was unbelievable to me that my beautiful daughter, who was only 31, could have breast cancer. I could reason with my own diagnosis, but not Mary’s,” she said.

“As her mum I wanted to take her cancer into my other breast, so she could get on with her life.

“I felt like I’d lived so much of my life, married with a family, but this should not be happening to Mary.”

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Mary, a former primary school teacher, returned from Africa and, like her mother, had treatment at the Edinburgh Cancer Centre. They would see the same oncologist and have the same surgeon.

She said it had been “strangely comforting sharing our experience”, and added: “It’s helped us knowing that we’re both in the same good hands, and the hospital understand of our situation.”

Angela said: “Going through breast cancer together seems a unique experience for a mother and daughter.

“When my surgeon carried out Mary’s surgery, I had so much faith in his skills and was that was a comfort.”

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Now, both women are taking to the catwalk as part of Breast Cancer Now’s The Show, a fashion show unlike any other for those who have or had the disease.

Mary said: “After everything that’s happened in our family, I can’t wait to take to the catwalk alongside Mum, hand in hand and celebrate how far we have come.”

They will join 22 other models who are all living with, or had breast cancer.

Angela said: “It feels like not just a privilege to take part in The Show, but to be with all of the other models on the day on the day too celebrating how far we have all come living with and beyond breast cancer and remembering those who have died from the disease.”

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Breast cancer is the most common form of cancer in the UK, and in Scotland the charity said around 4,800 women and 30 men are diagnosed with breast cancer every year – or around 94 per week.

You can take a virtual front-row seat on April 20 to watch Angela and Mary take to the catwalk. To register to watch The Show virtually visit https://breastcancernow.org/theshowlondon