Inspiring Charlotte Lewis has not only faced the disease twice but also supported her 11-year-old daughter Elizabeth when she had cancer four times, has now had her story and photograph included on the card to be sold nationwide for Cancer Research UK.
The 37-year-old, who is still undergoing treatment, said: ‘Elizabeth was diagnosed with a rare form of eye cancer when she was three. After having a tumour removed, receiving treatments at seven different hospitals and being given the all-clear, I then discovered a lump in my breast while I was pregnant with my youngest, Jack.
‘When Jack was just five weeks old, I started chemotherapy for breast cancer. It was difficult, but I plastered a smile on my face and went to face the kids.’
While Charlotte was going through her treatment, the family was struck with more bad news. Elizabeth’s cancer had returned. More surgery followed but she was warned that if it came back again, they may need to remove Elizabeth’s eye.
In early 2020, another tumour began to develop and Charlotte had to break the news to Elizabeth that the best way of preventing the cancer returning to her eye was to remove it.
‘We cried together when I told her but then she accepted there was not much we could do and went downstairs to design eye patches for her to wear after the operation,’ she said.
Elizabeth required two surgeries and received proton beam therapy treatment in Manchester to target any remaining cancerous cells so she and Charlotte were forced to spend several weeks away from the family during lockdown in the spring of 2020.
Determined to give something back, the family signed up to the Race for Life last summer in both Poole and Portsmouth, receiving special medals to add to those earned in previous years.
Charlotte added: ‘I received a second cancer diagnosis, shortly after the race so I’ve been having more chemo but I’m looking forward to taking part in the Race for Life again with all the family this summer.’
The Mother’s Day cards, priced from £1, are on sale in Tesco stores and at tesco.com until March 27.