Children Face Being Orphaned After Both Parents Diagnosed With Terminal Cancer

Children Face Being Orphaned After Both Parents Diagnosed With Terminal Cancer

"They were very into fitness and health, they eat organic, it's hit them both so hard," the husband's sister said.

One can't imagine what this young couple must be going through after being told that they both have terminal cancer. The couple, Adam Graveley, 38, and Caitlin, 39, are now having to deal with the fact that they will soon leave their children parentless, the Daily Mail reported. 

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Everything was perfect for the couple till they were diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer just three months apart. Graveley had managed to secure a good job which also sponsored him and his family. The couple tied the knot and were soon parents to two children, Thea, aged two, and four-month-old Fearn. Caitlin was diagnosed with Stage 4 bowel cancer in November after suffering pain she thought was due to her pregnancy, while Adam was diagnosed with Stage 4 pancreatic cancer in February. The family now wants to use their story to raise awareness of aggressive cancers that start among people under the age of 40. Adam's sister, Emma Reynolds, 41, says she and the rest of the family can't visit them until April. "I don't think you'll ever be able to understand why or process both of them. You just have to live with it - sometimes I talk about it and I'm detaching myself from it as I do. We're hoping and praying every day that the treatment they're getting works, and that they've got years rather than months. The hope is to raise awareness because they're so young, and how suddenly your life can be sent into absolute turmoil," she said. 

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"It was absolutely devastating. The tumour in her colon was quite large so they reckon she'd had it for over a year and a half, but because she was pregnant it could've masked the pain. 'She did say, looking back, she did have abdominal cramps but she thought it was to do with pregnancy," she further added. Emma then explained what had happened after Caitlin's diagnosis, "His wife was diagnosed in November so he'd been quite stressed but he had no other symptoms. We thought it was just going to be a stomach ulcer or his appendix." Early scans showed that Adam had two large masses on his pancreas and liver the result of pancreatic cancer that had developed for over a year. The location of the tumour meant Adam had no symptoms until it spread to his liver. "His liver is covered in lesions. It's the worst cancer you can get which is pancreatic cancer, it was just awful," Emma said. 

Representational photo (Getty images) / Photo by Justin Paget

The couple now travels together for their weekly chemotherapy sessions and requires the help of their family and friends to maintain their family life. "They've had enormous generosity - people do food parcels, cook things, they've had people pay for cleaner to come in, people offering to help with the kids. Helen, who is the Grandma, she will be there in the day and looks after Fearn when Caitlin has a scan, but they do try and have Fearn over a lot to alleviate pressure. It is conflicting for Caitlin she gets very upset because her maternal instincts, but it's weighing up what's best for their health. They were very into fitness and health, they eat organic, but it's hit them both so hard. As far as we were aware and they were aware there were no health concerns," Emma explained. The family has since raised a fundraiser for the couple.