A mum who has been diagnosed with cancer has shared a tender clip of her and her partner shaving their heads together.
Zoe Plastiras, 23, found a ‘grapefruit-sized’ tumour in her chest cavity while she was 32-weeks pregnant.
The first-time mum from Buckinghamshire was shocked when she realised her frequent periods of breathlessness were being caused by the mass.
As she was pregnant at the time, she was unable to receive treatment until baby Ophelia was born.
Zoe underwent various needle biopsies and a surgical biopsy to receive her final diagnosis of Stage 2 Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma.
Since receiving the news, she has been documenting her journey on Instagram in a bid to raise awareness of symptoms and help others with a similar diagnosis.
In a recent emotional clip, she and her supportive partner, Joe, are shown shaving each other’s heads.
Zoe is currently undergoing six rounds of chemotherapy, every three weeks, for the next four months, which meant she had started to lose her hair.
In the video, Zoe begins with brushing her hair, before showing how much is falling out and being left in the brush.
She then shaves Joe’s head, until he is left completely bald. Next, Zoe passes him the clippers to do hers.
While they smile and chat, her dark, brunette locks fall to the ground – with a few photos of the tender moment revealed at the end.
The video was captioned: ‘Today was shave day, my partner Joe wanted to join and support me, so we did his first.
‘I could not be prouder of him and more grateful for wanting to support me in this. Funnily enough, I was more emotional cutting my hair than shaving it off.
‘I was so ready to do this, watching it fall out every day is heartbreaking, I was ready for the cut! I do hate the fact I now look like a cancer patient & a piece of me is missing.
‘But she’ll be back, better & healthier than ever.’
Zoe admits the initial cancer diagnosis was a shock.
‘I got to 32 weeks pregnant and kept losing my breath and had a bit of a cough with movement,’ Zoe said.
‘111 told me to get to hospital in an ambulance but I finished work first and headed to A&E where they X-rayed me and took my bloods.
‘I was discharged and told I had a ‘slight abnormality’ with my heart. But the next morning I woke up to a few missed calls and so did my partner, from the hospital. They left messages saying I needed to get to hospital in the next 10 minutes and to go straight to cardiology.
‘They said that they’d found a mass the size of a grapefruit in my chest and I was being tested for cancer.
‘It was complete shock. It was an awful day. I’ll never forget it.
‘Originally, I was told I’d need open chest surgery, which petrified me.
‘It would have meant I couldn’t pick up my baby for two or three months while I recovered. The idea of this was heart wrenching. I cried so many tears.’
‘I didn’t like knowing I’d need to leave my newborn for appointments and surgeries.’
However, after having her daughter, Zoe began chemotherapy. Going forward, a CT scan is also booked for Zoe to discover if the treatment is working and has shrunken the mass.
Then after all the treatments are finished, she will have a PET scan to check if she’s cancer free.
In a show of support for the shave and her journey, her social media followers have flocked to her comment section to wish her well.
One user commented: ‘You’ve got this! We’re going to beat lymphoma!’
Another added: ‘So incredible, now get some red lip on and some hoops and never forget who you are!’
While a third noted: ‘Echoing what everyone has said, you look beautiful, a true warrior Zoe.’
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