A young mum who discovered she had cervical cancer on her son’s first birthday is celebrating five years in remission.
Natasha Murphy, 32, was diagnosed with cervical cancer in December 2011.
After months of intensive chemotherapy and radiotherapy she went into remission but the treatment triggered early menopause.
But the mum, from Droylsden, is now celebrating after being given the all clear.
“I am now making the most of life and loving it. I put my daily physical struggles aside and crack on, sometimes you have dark moments but that is human,” she said.
Natasha, from Droylsden, first asked for a screening test when she was 23 but was originally refused because she was under the age limit.
She hopes her story will encourage more people to get tested and help to spot the cancer sooner.
She still believes that the smear test age limit should be lowered from 25 to 20 and is calling on the government to take action.
Natasha says she has struggled with depression and anxiety since going into early menopause after her treatment.
She said: “The changes my body and mind has gone through due to the consequences of life saving treatment has been hard going.
“Although the physical side is really tough, the emotional side is possibly the harder one of them.
“I have suffered with depression and anxiety, I stopped going out with friends, I just felt different to them, somehow like less of a women, especially now I can’t have any more children.”
The mum, whose son Charlie is now six-years-old, says the never having another child is something she thinks about daily.
But she is now focusing on her future after recently marrying husband Aaron and gaining three stepdaughters.
She said: “I am so lucky to have such an understanding husband, and Charlie now has three sisters who adore each other.
“Now I am going to celebrate with my husband and family and live my life like everyday is my last. I am thankful to be alive and to wake up every day.”
Natasha received support and counselling from Christie Hospital and Willow Wood Hospice during her recovery process.
She also thanked Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust – the UKs only charity dedicated to supporting those affected by cervical cancer and cervical abnormalities.
“We have a Manchester group where I can be myself, say things that don’t sound daft and listen to others who are going through the same as me,” she said.
“I have gained some wonderful friends and the support is amazing.
“We are there for each other 24/7 and that’s why I want to raise as much money as I can for the charity as a massive thank you for helping me live my life and giving me the support I needed and still need to move forward.”
Natasha is holding a fundraising event to raise money for Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust at Droylsden Football Club on May 20.