I have cancer

We are all too familiar with the platitude, it won’t happen to me.  

What are the chances that I would strike a lottery in my lifetime or break a leg whilst skiing or lose an uncle in an unfortunate car crash? Many of us take for granted that it just won’t happen to me but in real life, these are all things that CAN happen.  


And the more mentally prepared one is the better one is able to cope with such circumstance, although pain is indeed inevitable. 

I have cancer. That was the sms text message I received from my mother one morning 5 years ago.  

So many people in this world have cancer and you hear about people having cancer in your day to day life, yet it hits you like….. a ton of bricks…….. when you suddenly realize that your own mother has cancer. Worst when she hasn’t even lived to half a century old. The effects are tenfold when you realize what kind of relationship me and my mom have always had. 

I locked my office room door and cried to myself for a whole 20 minutes before I plucked up the courage to call her. I picked up the phone and as composed as I forced myself to be, I could feel my voice start to stutter. In the end, mom ended up laughing and me crying. So wonderfully positive and strong, my mother. 

Adenoid Cystic Carcinoma. Mom made a joke that of ALL the types of cancer to have, she had to get one that was rare and untreatable.  

“What does that mean?” I asked really wanting to know what impact this had on her life and indirectly mine.  

The cancer was at a late Stage 2 and the Doctor could not say how long she had. The first thing I did after that phone call was send out a few more sms-es to my closest friends about the news, really for them to share my shock and sadness. I then did an internet search on the particular cancer.  

Apparently a slow growing cancer, it only spreads actively when it decides to have a spurt. It is not treatable with chemotherapy or radiotherapy and the only thing that can be done is to remove the tumour through operation. At that point, they wanted my mother to remove her whole tongue. She said forget it. As much as we tried to convince her that her mind was worth more than not being able to talk, she said no. 

Subsequently, she saw many Doctors and sought medical and non-medical advice from all over the world. I myself traveled miles to this supposed ‘miracle’ church which was a dilapidated attap roof makeshift holy house hidden away in some suburb. There I wrote on a piece of paper: 

“Please God let mom live another 10 years” and dropped it into the miracle box. Lit some candles and made my journey home. 

Mom’s had 2 operations so far and Doctors don’t recommend a third as it would aggravate the cancer. She survives on a cocktail of painkillers which help the pain but doesn’t alleviate it completely. She eats limited food due to the pain in half her mouth/throat area. She is sometimes irritable and moody. But she is alive. And she is around to play with my daughter. That alone makes me so grateful. I am so grateful for the last 5 years that I had with my mother.

Who is Mamapumpkin?
Mamapumpkin spent 7 years in London committing crimes to gain her Bartlett BSc in Architecture. She spent 7 years as a Stay At Home Mom raising her children as documented in this Mamapumpkin blog since over 10 years ago and thereafter returned to the Corporate World stronger than ever. Her last job as Country Director of a British Railway Signalling organisation saw her getting ill with an aortal and mitral heart valve regurgitation and early stage cancer. Through her journey from working to not working to working again, she sets out to prove to all women that they can do anything and everything that they set out to do; as long as they have that fire of desire burning within and the drive to work hard. Even better with oodles of love, passion and integrity.

Despite being ill, she has grown a network marketing business from very little knowledge and experience in the otherwise infamously known MLM (Multi-Level Marketing) industry, racing from an income of ZERO to RM 100,000 monthly in merely 2 years. She is a firm believer of the MLM business model but realises the pitfalls too and understands how and why the majority of people would shy away (or zoom far away) from any MLM business.

She is now pondering the title of her new book, From Zero to 100,000 RM monthly in 2 years and has a sequel in the pipeline with the aim of helping real professionals succeed in the World of MLM. Always the giver, Mamapumpkin has supported orphans for over 30 years and has now extended her care to the sick, single mothers, and even struggling families. She believes that with the MLM business model, we can all have a life of our own desires to enable real contribution into the world.

A beautiful life without limits.

Mamapumpkin currently manages the Homeschooling Hub Malaysia on Facebook. She also runs Working Women Malaysia (not THAT kind of Working Women!), Mamapumpkin - Creating A Life of Abundance, and Funky Moms on Facebook to offer REAL support to all women who want career and life success. She is a living testimony that women really can have a lot. Being financially free has enabled her to travel the world anytime anywhere doing anything, and she spends most of her day to day with her children, reading and supporting other women.

For enquiries, please contact her at mamapumpkin at gmail dot com or WhatsApp her at +6012-2333840
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  1. Boy, can I relate to what you’re going through. Your words are beautiful — keep recording them.

  2. Whenever you write about your mother, she always come across as a generous and selfless person. A beautiful soul. From her hard beginnings when she gave birth to you (as mentioned in an old post), to her trumping the odds in her life, I can’t help but cheer for her… And I always think 1 day, if ever I were to bump into her (if I can recognise her from your blog pics), it is my wish to tell her this… “You may not know me but your daughter has written such beautiful things about you… As beautiful as it is, I believe none can capture the essence of you… I heard you are in pain… And my prayers are with you… Whatever lies ahead, I wish you peace and love…”.

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