26 February 2020
Mum-of-two Sara Liyanage admits she loves a list. So, when at 42 years old she was diagnosed with breast cancer, it wasn’t long before she was putting day-to-day events in order and making a list of her journey through to a successful treatment.
It wasn’t long before the lists began to take the form of a book and now 'Ticking Off Breast Cancer', a chronological narrative of Sara’s life from the day of her diagnosis and throughout treatment, has been nominated for an Amazon award.
Sara, who was treated at Spire Harpenden Hospital, said: “With the combination of medical appointments, scans, surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy my dignity, grace and composure all flew out the window, but I did retain the ability make a few lists!
“I have made it through to the other side where I am now basking in the glow of hair regrowth, new eyebrows, new eyelashes, and a renewed energy but it seemed a shame for my dog-eared lists to get thrown out - I thought they might help other people like me.”
The book reached number one in the Amazon Breast Cancer chart before being shortlisted for The People's Book Prize where she is now a finalist and where the public can vote for her book. The winners will be announced at the end of April.
“Everyone at Spire Harpenden was absolutely tremendous and I made friends there who will be friends for life. I just hope that my book can give hope and inspiration to other breast cancer sufferers, along with their family and friends.
“It is a long, tough and emotional journey but I found my way through this ‘detour’ in my life and I hope my lists can help other people make their own way through the experience,” said Sara.