Kev's Story So Far

The 'Arrival' : (A)fter (D)iagnosis

Kev's describes the time -and the moment- that incurable disease changed his life forever:

"I was feeling good, in fact I was feeling great. I had just run some mega races, I was doing well at work, my family were good too, my plans for 2015 were already set with entry into the Brighton marathon and a race called The Wall; 120k across Hadrian's Wall in May. "I was on holiday in August 2014 staying at my brother in law's house in Charleston when I started getting up in the night for a wee once or twice a night. I put this down to a few beers, different diet, the water; just things to do with the holiday and really nothing else. "When I got back home from vacation, however, it continued and at work it started feeling like I was sitting on a golf ball; 5 minutes one day, 20 the next, then not at all for a few days. Very random, not painful, just uncomfortable. Then when having 'relations' with my wife, nothing came out of the end at the end if you get my drift. Everything felt normal though.

"I didn't wait too long before -unlike so many men- I made an appointment at the doctor's. I didn't think it was urgent so just booked an appointment for a week or so later.

"It would have been late September to early October 2014 when I actually saw the doctor. I explained my symptoms and he booked in a blood test and did the first of many of what I now call 'special doctors handshakes'."
Blood tests are incredibly stressful even at the best of times...
'The End of Innocence' on holiday in the US in 2014 as, unknowingly, Kev already had cancer

Early Tests & Investigations Reveal a Terrible Possibility

"A week or so later I was back for those initial results. My Dad had had prostate cancer about 10 years before and it didn't seem to affect him much, although I just thought it was probably some form of minor infection. The doctor looked at me and explained that the blood test was also called a PSA test and at my age a score of between 2 and 4 was normal. At the height of my Dad's cancer his score was about 12. The the doc looked at me and said that he was sorry (not sure why, it was not his fault?) but my score was 342 and that meant I probably had prostate cancer. He then looked at me and said with a kind of flicked switch moment that my Dad had prostate cancer too. I always remember walking out the door with an urgent referral for the hospital and his last words were "Good luck."

"A guy at work had been diagnosed with curable prostate cancer a year before, he had been treated and was mending well. So I thought that that should be me too then; an operation, some drugs and back to normal."
Kev's PSA test revealed a staggering result

"I don't really remember much about the next two months but a prominent memory is lying in bed at night waiting for my wife to fall asleep so that I could cry and not worry her."
Kevin Webber

Scans, Scans & more Scans

An incredibly stressful time in life is waiting for a diagnosis of disease, for you & your loved ones.

X-rays, scans, MRIs.. Kev's autumn was consumed by tests

Reality Check

"So then I saw more doctors at the local hospital and was sent for bone scans, MRI scans, CT scans and finally, a biopsy. And of course along the way there were a few more of those 'special handshakes'.The biopsy is particularly unpleasant, poised with my botty in the air whilst needles are shot inside me. You know before I had prostate cancer I always thought my backside would remain a one way street, but in fact it had seemingly turned into a wide two way super highway!

"23rd October, its funny that I am rubbish with dates and names but some now really stick in my head. On that day Alvin Stardust died, of prostate cancer and it worried me considerably.

"November 6th 2014, 11-00am; my wife and I sat nervously outside the doctors office waiting for the algorithm result from all the tests. As we walked in the doctor introduced me to a Macmillan nurse. Straight away I thought, "That's not good then." He pulled up my scans, looked at my results and announced that I had advanced prostate cancer which had spread and was growing fast. With a fair wind I 'could live 2 years... maybe 3 or 4 but don't think 10

He reiterated.

Tears, tears & more tears

"Tears. Lots and lots of tears. My wife and I were both blubbing and all I focused on was "two years". He stated that they could not cut it out and I would see another doctor who would tell me what they would do next. Since I have been diagnosed I knew men in similar situations who were diagnosed and sadly died within 6 months, so the doctor could at the time have thought he was being generous saying two years!

"So we saw the next doctor, he told me that he felt that early chemotherapy may help as there were ongoing studies indicating so, and, afterwards I would have radiotherapy to blast the 'mother ship' - although I felt that that was a bit like shutting the stable door after the horse had bolted! What I have since learnt that they are doing studies that show that removal/blasting the mother ship may also slow cancer growth progress; so my doctor was doing some cutting edge stuff, unknown to me. I am very grateful for that.
Blood test, after blood test - Kevin's new, enforced regime

Telling Loved ones

"I went and saw my dad and brother at the same time to tell them together. I had printed out information from Prostate Cancer UK's website to show them where I was on the cancer scale (at the wrong end). I wasn't being mean, I just didn't want them to do the "be strong and you will be fine" thing which, obviously, is a positive thing to do usually but in my case was utterly pointless and would only have made them feel even worse if they had started saying things like that. My dad took it hardest as although he was 85 and has a few of his own health issues it looked like I could well die before him: something, as a dad myself, I know that is not and never should be part of the deal when you have kids.

Kev had to tell his dad that he might die first - a statement that no father ever wants to hear

the future was very, very bleak

"I did some research into advanced (or metastatic) prostate cancer; it seemed like chemotherapy and radiotherapy could well combine to give me a rough year to start with. And I also read that my last year would also be tough as my health went downhill. So, going on the '2 year' estimate, then it appeared that my life was already over. My first chemotherapy session was set for 13th Jan 2015. I took a couple of mates and their families away to Woolacombe bay in Devon for a week over New Year. It was, in my head, my last holiday and I wanted to spend it with some mates and have a ball whilst I was still able. Chemotherapy is not great; you sit in a chair with 5 others around you, all having similar treatment. They take more blood (I am sure they have a vampire colony in the basement of my hospital!), tubes go in your arm, they put a bag up on a pole and off you go. I have always hated the thought of tubes in my arm and whilst not in any way painful I just wanted to pull it out, it was like an itch that I could not scratch. I got home, shuffled out of the car, felt ill and the most depressed and sad that I ever been in my entire life. I remember sitting in a chair at home having my dinner with absolutely no joy in my life, nothing good to look forward to and the thought of not just my demise but also me ruining the lives of my wife and family; of me being a burden.

KEV on Trying to process everything and 'live a normal life':

"Telling my three kids together the following Sunday was just quite simply the worst and hardest thing I have ever had to do. They told me later that they thought I was going to say that their Grandad was ill, so they were as shocked as can be when it turned out to be me and not Grandad. More tears. Kleenex have made a few quid out of my family the last few years I can tell you. After telling them, we then went out and played football, which was my attempt to say that I was ok for now so don't be sad. There were some days where I was going to work and I would not be able to get off the train, so I'd go back to wherever and back again, until finally I'd get to work hours later. At that time I had worked for RBS/NatWest for 34 years and I'd enjoyed my job and done okay. This now was the time when I realised how good an employer can be as they gave me all the time I needed, took away any pressure and let me do what I wanted to.
Time away with friends & loved ones - after diagnosis but before treatment commences
Chemo - one of the least fun 'positive' experiences one can have?

Want to Help?

This site & all of Kevin's missions, including a self-funded documentary about Making The Most of IT, are run by a VERY small bunch of volunteers, so if you think you can and would like to help us then of course we would LOVE to hear from you!!

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Kev says "I have already had a year longer in my life than I expected, thanks to new advancements in medicine; pleas ehelp fund some more. I pay all my costs to these events so all donations go entirely to Prostate Cancer UK."

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Kev is passionate about raising the profile of his missions alongside the important role of raising awareness and funds to help erdicate prostate cancer for men in the future. He tries to comply with all media requests if possible.
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