Nurse awakens mum's fight for life

BUNDABERG mother of five Dayna Perrin-Smith is under no illusion about why she is still here today.

She was on the verge of giving up life-saving treatment, when McGrath Breast Care Nurse Margie Mears stepped in to make sure she got the support she needed to continue.

Mrs Perrin-Smith was diagnosed with one of the most dangerous and fastest growing types of cancer in June last year.

“I was really struggling through the chemo and radiotherapy,” she said.

“I was terribly sick and, with five children, I couldn't get much rest.

“I remember phoning Margie (the McGrath breast care nurse) and telling her I didn't think I could keep going with the treatment.”

McGrath breast care nurse Margie Mears provided the mother with the physical, psychological and emotional support to continue.

“She was amazing. I was able to talk to her about it and she arranged appointments to speak with the doctor about the treatment,” she said.

“The emotional support she gave me enabled me to cope, consider all my alternatives and finally make the right decision to continue.

“I'm so grateful for her support.”

Since beginning her position at Bundaberg Hospital, Ms Mears has been able to provide support for 139 women with the disease.

“I am there right from diagnosis,” she said.

“I support them (the women) all the way through their journey.”

Mrs Perrin-Smith was given the all-clear last month but will continue check-up appointments.

“It's just wonderful to see her like she is now,” Ms Mears said.

“The best thing is seeing Dayna with that gorgeous hair on her head.”

Mrs Perrin-Smith said her battle was much easier with Ms Mears by her side.

“You find the strength within yourself to get through but having Margie made it much easier,” she said.

McGrath breast care nurses provide vital support for women across Australia such as Ms Mears, who encourages women to always be “breast aware”.

“Women should be looking for changes (in their breasts) every day,” she said.

“Women should be breast aware.

“There are all sorts of educational materials available.”

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