A dad has been told he has only weeks to live after suffering from what he thought were stomach aches caused by running.
Jonathan Nichols, 45, decided to see a doctor about his persisting pains, fatigue and weight loss in the summer of 2021 and was soon diagnosed with cancer.
Now his wife Kimberley Nicols and kids are rallying together to make the most of the time they have left together.
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Speaking of her husband's shock diagnosis, Kimberley, 47, told the Manchester Evening News: “He went in there really positive thinking everything was fine to be fine. It was going to be nothing."
While at hospital, Jonathan accidentally texted Kimberley his medical notes. That’s how she found out Jonathan had chronic myeloid leukaemia.
Jonathan, who is from Leeds but now lives in Formby, Merseyside, immediately began treatment which sadly only worked at the beginning.
“They tried all lines, but nothing worked,” Kimberley continued. “They gave him harsh chemotherapy to give him the best chance.”
On January 21, 2023, doctors told Jonathan he had just weeks left to live.
“I knew, I kind of just knew,” Kimberley said, recalling the moment the family were given the news. “I just had that gut feeling. I was in Jonathan’s room and he always had his blinds open. I could see them all meeting and talking.
“They all came in together and I knew it wasn’t good news. The consultant bent down on his knees, held his hands and said his condolences.”
“The palliative team rang me and I asked them, ‘Are we still talking weeks?’,” she continued. “They said it was days and I didn’t tell a soul. I didn’t tell anyone that information.”
Incredibly, five weeks on, Jonathan continues to defy doctors who have been left “mesmerised” by his inspiring positivity. Since his diagnosis, he’s not taken a single day off work as his job as CEO of an academy trust.
Kimberley said: “When he was having his transplant, he had his laptop open and was doing Zoom calls while attached to chemo. It’s not like he’s saying, ‘Look at me,’ it’s about his love of his job. It’s about doing better for education and every child.”
Kimberley and her children Joshua, 28, Joel, 22, Oliver, 13 and Tabatha, eight, now appreciate every moment they have with Jonathan while he is with them at home.
“It’s been horrific,” Kimberley continued as she became emotional. “If someone were to tell us at the time that it would be days, you’d crave these weeks. But they’ve been really difficult.
“We’ll cherish them. We had a fish and chip night and sat in the bedroom together and he managed to do letters for everyone, he’s written birthday cards.
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“Life has been cruel and every time I feel like we’ve got over a day, the next day gets harder. His one wish was that he always wanted to be at home and not a hospice.
“He has two young children and I don’t want their memories of their dad to be that way. I wouldn’t wish this part on anyone to go through.”
Jonathan’s son Joshua is now set to run the Manchester Marathon to raise money for the Clatterbridge Cancer Charity, which helped care for Jonathan during his time at the Clatterbridge Cancer centre.
To donate,follow the link by clicking here.
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