Corazon Miller is a NZ Herald reporter

'If I beat it once, I can do it again'

Baby joy turns to tears at second cancer diagnosis.
New parents Chris and Brooke with their baby daughter, Charlie, are determined to beat a devastating second cancer diagnosis.
New parents Chris and Brooke with their baby daughter, Charlie, are determined to beat a devastating second cancer diagnosis.

A new mum's joy of motherhood has been tempered by the heart-breaking news her cancer has returned - 18 months after being given the all clear.

Brooke Malyon, 33, and her fiance, Chris Prenter, welcomed baby girl Charlie into the world late last year.

The couple had recently moved to Carterton with the dream of starting afresh in their own home. They planned to get married later this year or early in 2017.

However, Malyon's cancer diagnosis, the second within two years, has disrupted this dream.

"It's a pain in the ass I got it twice, especially at a time when I should be enjoying life," she told the Herald on Sunday.

"It's a hell of a lot more emotional this time because Chris and I know what to expect and having Charlie, it's not a walk in the park."

The new mum was first diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma, a cancer of the lymphatic system, in 2013 and was given the all-clear after six months of treatment.

However, last Thursday, she found out she again had cancer, although it was unclear whether it was the same, or a secondary cancer.

Malyon was determined not to let it get her down. "If I beat it once, I can do it again," she said. "We need to look forward and we have a reason to do that - Charlie."

She described her two-month old daughter as the "happiest girl ever". "She's the perfect angel."

However Malyon was realistic that dealing with a newborn and her treatment would not be easy.

She was expecting to go through chemotherapy three days a week, roughly every fortnight, for four-six months, as well as some radiotherapy.

"It will knock me back," she said. "It's hard to think, it's hard to plan, but every day I just get up and just keep going."

Her younger sister, Georgia Prosser, 26, has set up a Givealittle page to help the family cope with the additional costs of going to Wellington for treatment.

"Our hope is that we can raise enough that when she pulls through she can focus on just being a mum."

Malyon was moved at the support she'd received so far, with more than $9000 donated.

"I had a day out of the hospital and at home filled with cuddles from our gorgeous girl and, I am not going to lie, plenty of tears.

"But as I sat with her in my arms reading hundreds of messages of love, support and inspiration it gave me more want to fight.

"Yes, this is a rubbish situation but with such amazing people around us we will get through this."

She said the family could not have coped without the support she has had as they were forced to go from two incomes to one while she underwent treatment.

"Last time I continued to work, but this time around I'm told I need to focus on getting better."

- Herald on Sunday

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