Here, Kathy Ashton, 57, tells the story in her own words.
S￼itting bolt upright in bed, I was woken by a tiny voice in my head. Then, I had a strange feeling in my left breast.
I was horrified when my hands grazed over a mass underneath my skin. I’d felt other lumps before – but this one seemed different.
Unable to sleep, I asked my husband, Chris, now 62, to take a look at it. ‘You need to go to the breast clinic,’ he panicked.
Later that morning I drove straight there and in the waiting room my heart pounded. Although I was in the middle of a nightmare, I heard the tiny voice again – it was telling me I was going to be okay. My mind cast back to a moment in 1995…
Chris and I had taken our eldest son Tim, now 31, to a theme park in Hong Kong, where we decided it might be fun to visit a palm reader. With my palm in his hand, the old Chinese man looked me in the eye.‘In your 54th year you will suffer a major health crisis. Don’t worry, you’ll be fine and live a long life to late 80s or early 90s,’ he said. Being 35 at the time, I barely gave that scary premonition any thought. It was only when I woke up that morning, in 2014, that I recalled the man’s haunting words – and I was turning 54 that year.
The voice was clear in my mind as I waited for ultrasound results. Watching dozens of women come and go in the clinic, it took several hours before my doctor called me back in. He gave me the news I never thought possible: It looked like cancer.
As awful as the situation was, the fortune teller’s voice popped back into my head as I remembered he said I’d live to a ripe old age. It helped the stress melt away slightly.
Several days later and after a biopsy, it was confirmed to be cancer.
In a daze, I went through the motions and booked myself in for a double mastectomy. Before I was wheeled into surgery, my beautiful daughter, Rebecca, 26, gave me some sage words of advice. ‘Don’t you go into the light, Mummy!’ she begged.
After recovering, I had my breast reconstruction as planned.
Three years later, I am completely cancer-free. I’m so grateful to be alive, especially after welcoming my little granddaughters, Zoe, two, and Abbie, six months, into the world. My family thinks I’m a little bonkers, but I knew I was going to be okay, because that fortune teller told me so.
Thank goodness I had my palm read that day!
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