‘He is our miracle baby’ – Suffolk woman is proud to Stand Up To Cancer
© 2013 Mark Hewlett
A Bury St Edmunds woman says she is “proof there is life after cancer” after beating the disease and giving birth to a baby boy.
Bianca Pearl, 31, feared her breast cancer had returned when she felt unwell only a year after her chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatment had ended in April 2015.
But her fears turned to delight when her doctor told her that – against the odds – she was nine-weeks pregnant.
Now the mother-of-one is supporting Stand Up To Cancer – a joint fundraising campaign from Cancer Research UK and Channel 4 – to celebrate the birth of her “miracle baby” Arthur.
Bianca, together with husband Owen and son Arthur, is urging people to back the campaign and help raise money at work, school or home.
“When I was diagnosed, I was distraught, but I said to Owen that he didn’t have to stay with me,” Bianca said.
“It’s a big commitment, especially as we’d only been together a year – and he was only 25. But he said he’d stand by me.”
Following chemotherapy, Bianca had 15 sessions of radiotherapy at Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge and was told in August, 2015, that she was ‘cancer-free’.
The following June, after the couple arrived home from a holiday to Cape Verde, Bianca began to feel unwell.
“When we got back, I was really ill and went to the doctor,” she said. “I was obviously worried that it was connected to the cancer.
“But instead I found out that I was about nine weeks pregnant. Because the likelihood of getting pregnant naturally was very low, it was the last thing on my mind. I was ecstatic.”
Owen then proposed the following month – the anniversary of Bianca’s cancer diagnosis – and after a normal pregnancy Arthur was born on February 8 last year.
“Arthur is a blessing,” Bianca said. “We think of him as our miracle baby.
“Owen and I married on 18 May this year in Halkidiki in Greece, surrounded by friends and family – with Arthur as our page boy. It was the perfect wedding I’ve always dreamed of.
“Some days I can’t believe everything I’ve gone through. My family kept me going throughout.
“I’m proof there’s life after cancer. You can beat it and carry on a normal life. That’s why I’m proud to be standing up to cancer and helping Cancer Research UK fund valuable research to help others.”
Danielle Glavin, Cancer Research UK’s spokeswoman for the east, said: “We are very grateful to Bianca and her family for their support.
“Stand Up To Cancer funds translational research that aims to have a real impact on patients’ lives.
“We’ve made amazing progress against cancer in the past few decades. Thanks to new treatments, screening and earlier diagnosis, more people are surviving the disease than ever before.
“Money raised by Stand Up To Cancer is helping change the face of cancer research by funding clinical trials, which mean new and improved treatments can be tested and then given to people who need them most.
“One in two of us in the UK will develop cancer at some point in our lives. That’s why we need everyone to join in and make a stand against cancer right now.”
Stand Up To Cancer has raised £38 million since it was launched in the UK in 2012. The funding is used for clinical trials and projects which accelerates the development of new cancer treatments and tests, to help patients and ultimately save more lives.
Stand Up To Cancer will culminate with a night of live TV on Channel 4, on Friday, October 26.