Australian journalist Elle Halliwell has announced that leukaemia has been ‘detected’ in her blood again – just months after being told she was cancer-free.
The 33-year-old author of A Mother’s Choice, who was officially cancer-free in January, was told there were traces of the potentially life threatening cancer in her body in her latest blood test.
‘Okay so here goes. I’ve been keeping something from you,’ her emotional post on Instagram began.
‘Not because I didn’t want anyone to know but I guess having had such amazing news earlier this year regarding my results I didn’t want to put a downer on things.
Three years ago journalist Elle Halliwell (pictured) was delivered the best and worst news of her life, all in the space of 48 hours
‘I also don’t really want to give it oxygen because it doesn’t define me and no longer has a hold on me emotionally.’
Despite calling it ‘sucky’, the doting young mother is determined to fight whatever battle lies ahead, just like she did three years ago when she was first diagnosed.
‘We all live with the uncertainty of tomorrow. But I like to live with the belief that the universe is always working in my favour,’ she said.
When Elle was hand delivered the crippling cancer news in 2016, alongside a pregnancy announcement, she was worried about what that meant for her and husband Nick’s family plans
How is leukaemia diagnosed?
A blood test showing an abnormal white cell count may suggest the diagnosis.
To confirm the diagnosis and identify the specific type of leukaemia, a needle biopsy and aspiration of bone marrow from a pelvic bone will need to be done.
This will test for leukemic cells, DNA markers, and chromosome changes in the bone marrow.
‘It’s got my back and when stuff goes wrong? It’s something to grow and learn from.’
In 2016 doctors told the then 30-year-old from Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs that she had a serious blood cancer called chronic myeloid leukaemia. Then, 48 hours later, they told her she was pregnant.
Six months ago Elle and her family – which now includes a son named Tor Felix – were told she was cancer-free.
On Tuesday many of her 23,000 followers where quick to offer words of advice and encouragement, including Kris Smith who told her she ‘has this thing beat’.
Elle went on to say: ‘We all live with the uncertainty of tomorrow. But I like to live with the belief that the universe is always working in my favour’
Many of her 23,000 followers where quick to offer words of advice and encouragement, including Kris Smith who told her she ‘has this thing beat’
When Elle was hand delivered the crippling cancer news in 2016, alongside a pregnancy announcement, she was worried about what that meant for her and husband Nick’s family plans.
‘I mean, I guess having to tell your family that first you have leukaemia and then you have a pregnancy to complicate things further was – it was really hard,’ the author of A Mother’s Choice told the Today show previously.
‘For me it was really sad because I didn’t know what was going to happen. A few weeks later you know after seeing specialists and stuff we had to kind of sit down and decide what we were going to do.’
Elle Halliwell (pictured) spoke candidly about the unthinkable dilemma that saw her put her son Tor’s life before hers after she was diagnosed with cancer
Elle and Nick were told by doctors her best option was to end the pregnancy and to start treatment immediately.
‘They suggested that I terminate the baby,’ she told the program.
‘Or I could continue with the pregnancy and just wait until I had Tor until I had my baby to start this new lifesaving drug that had only just come on the market a few years beforehand which had a great outcome for people that went on it quickly after being diagnosed,’ she said.
Against all odds, the mother gave birth to her bundle of joy after refusing chemotherapy
Just two days before she was diagnosed with cancer, the mother discovered she was pregnant (pictured now with her baby son Tori)
‘So, I took that risk. And you know eight months later this little guy came into the world.’
‘The moment I thought about the tiny embryo, this seed of hope germinating in my womb, the idea of losing it was inconceivable,’ she said in an extract of her book, published in Stellar magazine.
Taking a turn for the worse, Elle was told by doctors that if she delayed her treatment for a few months, the cancer could become acute if left untreated.
Elle and her husband Nick were told that they should terminate their pregnancy
She understood declining treatment was risking leaving her baby son without a mother.
But Elle said she found the strength to hold onto the glimmer of hope by undergoing an alternative treatment to ensure the safety of her unborn baby.
‘It had given me a reason to live – a tiny beacon of light flashing in a sea of blackness, urging me to stay afloat and find a safe harbour, ‘ she said.
Against all odds, she welcomed her baby son in December 2016 before she embarked on her chemotherapy treatment.
Happy family! Despite the turbulent journey, the proud parents welcomed their baby son