Young patient Thomas Ashley has been detailing his blood cancer journey and battle against Acute Myeloid Leukaemia (AML) following his diagnosis aged just fifteen as part of an online blog in association with Cure Leukaemia, and we bring you the latest edition that details his life post-treatment:

Life wasn’t slowing down but I had become stuck and I was worrying friends, to the point where my friends had to message my mum to tell her that they were worried for me, worried that I might do something stupid. I had to tell my friend I was in bad a place and that I might do something stupid but I knew I never would. That hurt though… a lot.

Not only knowing your mum has to hear that but also your best friend, thinking that could be a possibility. You never want that to be the case. You don’t want to burden people. You don’t want to put this much pressure on other people, as if they have to do something about it when they already have their own problems and circumstances in life to deal with.

I had already been a burden for much of my life and here I was, continually being a burden because I refused to face my what was ahead of me. I say I refused but I just didn’t know how to do it. This was my cry for help. This was the only way I knew. In matter fact, I didn’t know what to do.

Much of London was a blur, just like previous times because I just wanted to get through it. I was finding excuses to why I was feeling the way I was and just blamed my current situation instead of going to the root cause. I could blame what I had been through and use it as an excuse but I couldn’t take accountability for it. However, then in May, my cat Floss died who for me, was an integral part of my life. I spent so much time of my life with her, in some of my toughest moments that losing her was like another part of me being taken away. She was the only one who knew everything.

You can’t help but associate everything with everything when you are feeling like this. Everything stems from one thing and you know what it is. You constantly blame it but just don’t do anything about it. But that’s why these ‘notes’ resonate, more than ever. They’re just super raw and shows the pain I was in. I look back on them, and I wish I could forgive myself for feeling this way. I had every right to. I was just too young. I couldn’t comprehend it and didn’t want to. So, all I did was write about it. It was the only way I could express the pain and hurt I was in.

I’m hurting so much. So much pain. I don’t think I can handle it anymore. Pain after pain after pain! It just doesn’t stop. So much hurting and aching and pain! I just wish it would stop.

I just don’t want to do it anymore. I don’t want to suffer anymore. It’s horrible and just doesn’t get better. Nothing seems to get better. No matter what I try it just doesn’t get better! It doesn’t f#%!ing work.

And now I’m hurting more than ever! I don’t want too anymore. It just slowly eats away at you, taking bite after bite, until there’s nothing left. I don’t know how much more I can go on till there’s nothing left. Nothing left to take from me. Until I just want it to stop!

It hurts. Just raw pain! Nothing else. Just years of it. Years of this and it just haven’t gotten better. It’s supposed to, that’s what I’m always told. It will get easier! But it never does. Just harder and harder. It keeps digging, getting deeper into a pit which gets harder to escape each time.

It takes from you the good things and leaves you hollow. Doesn’t replace it. Just takes. I don’t want this. It’s horrible! F#%!ing horrible!

I never knew how much physical pain there is! It aches. My heart hurts so much. I’m drained. Draining all the hope I have out. I don’t want to live in a world like this. I wish I knew when it would stop. Because it hasn’t since I was 15. But it’s supposed to. Or was that just me grasping to false hope. I don’t know anymore.

I can’t go on living in fear knowing i could wake up one morning and someone I love dearly has gone. Again. Anytime someone I love could just gone. No goodbyes, no reasoning. Just gone. I don’t want to live like this. I f#%!ing hate cancer! Everything to do with it!! Nothing good has ever happened because of it! It’s just awful! F#%!ing awful.

I miss them so much. I love you so much Granny. I love you so much Floss. You both meant everything to me. Always there for me in your own unique ways, no matter how I felt. There is so much more I want to write and need to write. So much to write. So much about it all. But it hurts. A lot. And I don’t enjoy the pain. It just makes me suffer. Suffer in my own unique way.

I don’t know what I need. Just for all of it to go away. But I know that’s impossible.

I have no more ‘notes’ from London. I used to try to block it out if I am being honest. I didn’t enjoy it. Whether that’s because of my mental health or I just made a mistake with what I wanted, I don’t think I’ll ever know. For me it is easier to block things out than to face them. I could have faced my mental health then but I decided to ignore it and run. And I’m sorry to everyone I have hurt because of it. But when I look back and reflect, I’ll forever be grateful for my experience. I know it’s all part of my journey. My journey of becoming a better person, becoming me. This is something I will write about, towards the end of my blog series. My life lessons, my morals and what I value.


We will be posting weekly editions of Thomas’s blog on our website. Head over to our Candid with Cancer blog to read the full blog