Mum with cancer says kids light up her life

Ann Sandeman with her three children, Hannah, Emma and Ben. Pictured at their home in Hastings.
Ann Sandeman with her three children, Hannah, Emma and Ben. Pictured at their home in Hastings.

A MUM battling against cancer has named her three children as the shining stars in her life.

Ann Sandeman, 41, from Hastings, who is undergoing her third bout of cancer treatment was responding to Cancer Research UK’s question to its supporters: “Who lights up your life?”

She named eight-year-old Hannah, Emma, six, and Ben, four, and said: “Cancer can be a very dark and lonely experience and the one thing you need to get you through, is some light in your life. That for me is the love and laughter provided by my children.

“They are the three reasons I get out of bed every day when I don’t feel well and why I am determined to keep on fighting.”

The charity asked the question to highlight its night-time walking marathon “Shine” which takes place in London on September 29.

When Ann first took part in Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life in 2007, she did it because she thought it was the right thing to do to help others with cancer.

Little did she know that as she jogged round Alexandra Park with thousands of other women, there was a time bomb ticking inside her - not only did she have early stage breast cancer but she was pregnant with her third child.

However, thanks to an early diagnosis and a brave decision to go ahead with her chemotherapy during pregnancy, her son Ben was born healthy. A year later she was clear of cancer.

However, just as she regained her health her cancer returned and Ann was told that although it was treatable, it wasn’t curable.

Ann is now facing a mastectomy and further chemotherapy after a further tumour developed in her breast.

Ann is forever grateful for the treatment she has had and is still having and is marking that by supporting Shine next month.

Shine participants can walk a full or half marathon route, which starts on the south side of the River Thames at Battersea Power Station and passes many of London’s most iconic sights.

For more information or to sign up as a volunteer for the event visit