For months Chanelle Moles suffered from severe exhaustion. She had recently given birth to her second child and doctors told her that the extreme fatigue was due to low iron, post-natal depression and hormone imbalance.
Chanelle, who lives in the Perth suburb of Fremantle, knew it was more than just low iron when, after a short walk, she couldn’t get out of bed for three days. This was in August 2020.
For three months she pushed doctors to do scans and to find out what was happening. In September 2020, she had a colonoscopy which revealed a 9x10x8cm tumour in her colon.
In October 2020, it was confirmed that the tumour was cancerous and had spread to her liver and lungs. Chanelle was in her early 30s, had two very young children and was in absolute disbelief.
Never in my wildest dreams could I have thought that within five years of becoming a mummy I would be told I don’t have long to live,” Chanelle said.
Chanelle immediately started aggressive chemo to try and fight the cancer. She underwent 13 months of invasive chemotherapy, major surgeries and natural treatments.
However, in July 2021, she was told her body was no longer responding to the chemotherapy.
The mother of two tried CyberKnife, a radiation therapy device, to get rid of the spots on her liver.
In November 2021 the family received the best news they’d had since Chanelle’s dreadful diagnosis – the cancer was in remission. The treatment had worked to destroy the lesions on her liver.
However, just one short month later, in December 2021, further scans revealed the cancer had spread to her peritoneal cavity, ovaries and her abdominal area.
Even worse news
In January 2022 she received a glimmer of hope. A surgeon told Chanelle he would be able to remove all the cancer – leaving her with a “clean slate”.
But after waking up from a 16-hour surgery, she was told the doctor was unable to remove all the cancer.
Just when you think things can’t get worse, they have. Additional scans showed the cancer was now in my lymph nodes, diaphragm, and lungs and had returned to my liver. The surgeon told me I had 6-18 months to live.
Going into a surgery I thought would save my life to being told I had a few months left to live.”
This was three months ago.
‘I don’t want to leave them’
Chanelle’s two beautiful children – Marlon and Éabha are just five and two. For the majority of Éabha life, Chanelle has been fighting cancer.
She’s spent nights and nights away from her kids while her husband, Graham, tries to keep things afloat on one income. We cannot imagine how heartbreaking this would be for the entire family, especially for the kids who have to witness mummy living in and out of hospitals.
Every day I wake up, I wish I could just ‘wake up’ from this nightmare and see that it was all just a dream.
Unfortunately it is not, this is my reality and the reality for my beautiful children and husband. I don’t want to leave them, not yet. I love life and I am doing everything I possibly can to fight for mine.”
Last month Graham reached out to the community for help. He started a GoFundMe page as a way to raise funds for Chanelle to travel to America for “imminent” life-saving cancer treatment.
While Chanelle is out of options in Australia, there is a clinic in America that may just be able to save the young mum.
The US clinic specialises in treatment for her rare cancer genes and there is a place for her available immediately.
However, the treatment comes at a costly price of up to $150,000.
It’s a small price to pay for a mum’s life but a lot of money for a family who has been living off one compromised income for the last three years,” the family said.
Just five days after asking the community for support, the GoFundMe account met its goal and Chanelle is booked on a flight to America on 12 May 2022. The family is blown away by the kindness and support and is praying the treatment will give her a real chance to recover and to see her children grow up.
Our thoughts and prayers are with Chanelle and her family as they make the trek over. To keep updated on Chanelle’s journey, you can follow her on the pages below. You can donate through her GoFundMe page to help with further treatments. At this stage she has the funds for 3 months’ worth but will require 6-9 months of treatment in total.