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On Feb 1 2018 G celebrated his 71 st birthday .We visited York ,had a lovely lunch at a super 'designer chef' restaurant where I gave G his birthday present (a steam train day in May on the Settle to Carlisle line) In the evening G went to the Rugby Club where he has been 1st team manager for the last 25 years and enjoyed his birthday greetings from 'the boys' It had been a lovely day . On the following Saturday G packed his Rugby bag as usual and set off for the game .Unusually he returned earlier than usual ,very tired and with a red rash on his upper torso . The next day, Sunday ,G (a Church Reader)was preaching but instead of staying for coffee after the service we came immediately home G said the rash had spread and started to itch . That evening we sat down to our Sunday roast but G's appetite wasn't good, the rash was red and the irritation severe .We both thought he had food poisoning ,possibly from a piece of fish he'd eaten on Friday.On Monday G got an emergency appointment to see his doctor who confirmed G had jaundice and took a blood sample .The results of the blood sample came back that evening with a scary bilirubin level of 550 (normal bilirubin level being 20 -30) G was now a very worrying yellow ,skin and eyes .The next day G was admitted to hospital ,tests taken, he had a scan and drainage procedure began (his urine was the colour of dark brown tar) The following day he had a bilary stent fitted to assist bilirubin drainage.

G was diagnosed with Stage 4 inoperable pancreatic cancer and our world turned upside down ! Other than the onset of the jaundice rash there had been no symptoms, G having excellent health throughout our 49 years of marriage .

Recovering from the jaundice has been tough ,he spent almost 4 weeks in hospital before being discharged and a further 4 weeks recuperating at our daughter's house (Our daughter has been fantastic although she too is devastated) During this time the incessant itching has had a debilitating effect on his health as he had broken sleep every night and sometimes didn't sleep at all.

We visited the oncologist 2 weeks ago who hopes to devise a chemo programme in the near future.

Unfortunately G has developed a further complication and is now back in hospital for observation. Whether or not these recent issues will affect his chemo chances we do not know .

It seems impossible that it is only a little over 12 weeks since we celebrated G's birthday in York,we had no idea that the hidden enemy of pancreatic cancer was lurking so destructively .We have wonderful support from family and friends who help to keep us from a vortex of despair but it breaks our hearts to see him so downcast and poor;y .

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