Mata’s first thoughts were for her daughters Elizabeth and Inglera when she was diagnosed with advanced breast cancer.
“My world fell apart. All I could think about was staying strong for my girls,” says Mata.
Mata’s girls know everything about her diagnosis. She’s told them about her treatments and what’s going to happen to her.
“Inglera is my fighter. She tells me no one and nothing will take me from them. She tells me to fight.”
A year after her breast cancer diagnosis in 2009, Mata lost all her energy. She even fell asleep while cooking dinner. The cancer had spread.
“At first I froze. I was in shock,” she says.
“I asked the doctor how bad it’ll get for me because I thought it was the end. I thought my world was gone.”
Mata fears for her girls.
“I try not to cry around them. I don’t like them seeing me in pain,” she says.
“Elizabeth didn’t cope well at first. She couldn’t concentrate at school. She wanted to be home to look after me.
“She’s a lot stronger now. And Inglera always tells her she has to stay strong for me.”
For Mata, time with her girls is very precious.
“I’m spending as much time as I can with the girls and trying to make good memories for them to look back on.”
“My initial goal was to see Elizabeth go to college. She’s year 9 now. So my new goal is to see her go to university. I’m going to keep fighting as long as I can.”