Nicola Jane Guest Blogger: Author of The Fabulous Woman’s Guide Through Cancer, Nicola Bourne

Introducing our Nicola Jane ‘Book of the Month’ for March: “The Fabulous Woman’s Guide Through Cancer” by Nicola Bourne
Nicola Bourne, Author of: The Fabulous Womans Guide Through CancerNicola wanted to create a book which would help all ladies who are currently going through a cancer diagnosis. It was during her own bowel cancer experience that Nicola realised there was something missing from all the literature she has been looking through trying to seek help during her treatment, this is when she decided to write her own book.

I knew that I had to write a book that could support women through the ‘life’ parts of cancer.  A book that would give real advice from specialists such as nutritionists and stylists like Nicola Jane, as well as the experiences of other women who have had cancer.  I wanted to include tips, examples, ideas, stories, personal memoirs, all with plenty of kind words and inspiration.  I also wanted to make sure that the book was written with some much needed compassion and a dash of humour, so that any woman going through cancer wouldn’t feel alone like I did.
My own experience with cancer... 
I will always remember the look on the colonoscopy consultant’s face when he told me he had found a tumour he believed to be cancerous.  It was one of pure shock.  The nurse looked like she was going to cry and my husband’s jaw was somewhere near the floor.  This was the beginning of me having cancer for them.  But for me, my cancer experience had started much earlier.

I had been experiencing rectal bleeding on and off, for around eight years. Over those years I had visited various GPs about the bleeding but they always said the same, you’re too young to have Bowel Cancer.  If the bleeding goes away then that means it’s nothing serious so you don’t’ need to worry.  A common misconception and it turns out – not true! I had lost my own mother and grandmother to bowel cancer just a few years earlier so I was well aware of the symptoms, but the bleeding would stop, so I assumed that I was fine.
During my second pregnancy the rectal bleeding and discomfort became intolerable.  I returned to the GP three times during that pregnancy, always with the same responses from the GP, It’s common during pregnancy to have small tares caused by pressure so I’m sure it’s nothing to worry about.  When my symptoms continued after my daughter was born, I quite literally fought for tests until my GP finally referred me for a colonoscopy.  Things happened very quickly after that and in the blink of an eye I had gone from night-feeds with my baby and playdates with my toddler to IV’s with cocktails of drugs and surgeries that would last for hours.  Although I had support for the treatment side of cancer when it came to attempting to navigate cancer combined with all the other elements of my life, I felt alone.

I looked for books to guide me though the ‘lifestyle’ parts of cancer, but found that books were usually medical, or memoirs of people who had died from cancer. Neither covered what I was looking for.  I wanted to know about the lifestyle effects of having cancer - what to pack for hospital, how to stay social when I didn’t feel well enough to go out, attending social events, how to explain it to children and what to do when depression takes hold…
The book...
The Fabulous Woman's Guide Through Cancer by Nicola BourneKeeping experience’s in the book authentic and first hand was very important to me, which is why if there was an area that I hadn’t personally experienced, I asked someone who had experienced it or professionals in that sector, so they could share their story or expertise.  This is how I initially got in touch with Nicola Jane.  I didn’t have a mastectomy, but knowing what a critical moment it is for so many fabulous women, I wanted to make sure that it was covered and that they would receive practical help through the transition.  As Nicola Jane have provided mastectomy fashion for over thirty-years I knew they would have plenty of tips to support women for life after breast surgery and they really did, giving an insight, expertise and understanding.  

It wasn’t always easy writing a book about the worst experience I’ve encountered.  I remember writing the section about chemotherapy and feeling like I could feel the chemotherapy seeping up my arm. Similarly when writing about the emotional side of cancer, reliving the rollercoaster once again, I came away from my computer crying.  But for me that was important.  To delve deep into the emotions and make sure I was honest and open about what people go through when they have cancer. To keep heart and realism in the book so that the reader would know they aren’t alone, whatever they are feeling.

The Fabulous Woman’s Guide Through Cancer is an absolute labour of love, which did give me the chance to process what I had been through and turn one of the worst experiences of my life into a positive.  A way to help other women, making sure they have a type of support that I wish I’d had.  Nothing compares to the getting wonderful, heartfelt messages from ladies who have been touched or helped in some way by reading The Fabulous Woman’s Guide Through Cancer.  The response has been so positive and inspiring, leading the book to peak at number 3 in the Amazon charts, which is awesome but mainly, I am so thankful to be able to help other fabulous women.

Written By


01 Mar 2017
Love browsing through this my friend brought me your book. She has had Breast cancer twice. I have lung cancer going through chemo. Really struggling with it and emotional side.
Leave your comment