A grandmother living with terminal cancer is planning her wedding, at the same time as having to make arrangements for her funeral.
Linda Boniface, 52, is hoping to marry her long-term partner Mark, with whom she has a 12-year-old son, Riley, in the coming days.
A fundraiser set up by a friend is helping to pay for the big day, as well as ensuring a contribution is left for Riley’s future.
Ms Boniface, who has three children and three grandchildren and lives in Larkfield in Kent, has been told she may have as little as six months to live.
She said the coronavirus lockdown has made things harder, and meant she has had to tell Mark and her adult children the news over the phone rather than in person.
As well as expressing their love for one another, her and Mark’s wedding will be something for Riley too, she said.
Ms Boniface told the PA news agency: “One of the things that he really has specified over the years is he really wants us to be married, so it’s not just for us, it’s for him as well.”
She said the “hardest part” of the whole process of finding out she has terminal cancer was telling Riley.
The devastating news came after she had already been through treatment for breast cancer.
She told PA: “I started to kind of get my fitness back, started to be able to walk a mile again, and then, within a couple of weeks, I started to get really breathless and couldn’t work out what was going on.
“I was really wheezy and even walking from my living room to my bathroom, which is a short walk along the passageway, I was getting really breathless.”
She underwent tests to investigate what was going on and medical staff later informed her of the news that cancer had spread to her brain.
Ms Boniface, who worked as a school invigilator and volunteer welfare officer, said she has probably between six and nine months left.
She said: “I was actually kind of half expecting it, so really the news hasn’t really been difficult for me. It’s been difficult for me in the fact that I’ve got three children, three grandchildren, and one of my children is only 12.
“So he’s going to lose his mum within a year, so I’m trying to kind of plan and make sure that as much is in place for his future as possible.
“At the same time as planning my wedding I’ve also been planning my funeral so that I can put that as cheap as possible as well and then that way, if both of those things are paid for, whatever’s left over will go towards his future.”
The fundraiser launched by one of her friends has already reached more than triple the initial target.
It can be accessed at https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/kim-linksted
So far, more than £5,500 has been raised.
Ms Boniface said she is determined to make the most of the time she has left, adding: “What is the point in sitting crying about it? I’m just wasting the time that I’ve got left with my family and friends to keep making memories.”