Terminally ill mother-of-two married in hospice wedding after learning she had only two months left to live

// World | Terminally ill mother-of-two married in hospice wedding after learning she had only two months left to live
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  • Georgie Boyd and Joe McCauley from Glasgow knew their time was precious

  • Georgie was suffering from second brain tumour

  • Staff decorated the hospital in purple, bride's favourite colour

By Bianca London

PUBLISHED: 10:48 EST, 12 November 2012 | UPDATED: 11:50 EST, 12 November 2012

A terminally ill woman married her partner in hospital after learning she only had two months left to live.

Georgie Boyd, 31, and John McCauley, both from Glasgow, wed at the Prince and Princess of Wales Hospice in the city in June 2011 while Georgie was suffering with her second brain tumour.

Knowing their time was more precious than most, the couple planned the wedding in a few days, decorating the building with candles and purple balloons, Georgie's favourite colour.

Terminally-ill Georgie married her boyfriend in hospital despite learning she only had two months left to live

Terminally-ill Georgie married her boyfriend in hospital despite learning she only had two months left to live

Friends and family joined the bride and groom in what was a day filled with love, hope and happiness.

Liz Boyd, Georgie's mother, said: 'Georgie loved it. I thought she would get tired, but she lasted right to the end. She had a great day and that is what she wanted.

'It was unfortunate she could not walk very well at that point and was in a wheelchair before the service, but her father George and brother Jamie walked her down the aisle, as it were.

'Georgie wanted to be able to walk and she achieved that with sheer determination.

Georgie's children from a previous marriage, 15-year-old Marc and 10-year-old Bethany, were by her side the whole time.

Georgie and John wed at the Prince and Princess of Wales Hospice while Georgie was suffering with her second brain tumour

Georgie and John wed at the Prince and Princess of Wales Hospice while Georgie was suffering with her second brain tumour

Liz said: 'It was just like any other wedding in the morning with glasses of champagne and everyone getting their hair and nails done, so there was a nice wee buzz in the house.

'We had tremendous support from Fairfield Bowling Club where we held the reception, everyone was marvellous.

'I was president the year Georgie passed away and for her wedding gift, the ladies did her wedding meal. The tables were all set out with lilac voile and purple swags and feathers, and vases of purple flowers and tea lights.

'Another friend did the disco and a girl I worked with made the wedding cake.

The couple spent the night in the Hilton Hotel, a gift from the hospice.

Georgie was 25 when she was diagnosed with her first brain tumour in 2005 after suffering with seizures and not feeling well.

Doctors at the Royal Infirmary discovered a shadow on her brain and performed surgery to remove the tumour.

Friends and family, including Georgie's mother Liz, joined the couple in what was a day filled with love, hope and happiness

Liz said: 'She was really strong. She had the surgery in the morning and I didn't think she would want to see anyone in the evening, but no, immediately out of the recovery room she told Joe, "Tell my mum to come up".'

While she was in hospital Georgie had another seizure.

Liz said: 'It was clear by that time that the damage from the brain tumour was going to cause epilepsy which was, I would say at that point, the biggest problem because it took such a long time to get it stabilised.'

It took about 10 months for Georgie to recover from the surgery and for radiotherapy and seizures to settle down.

Liz said: 'She started to get a wee bit of quality of life back. She wasn't confident to go out on her own but she was able to move into her own house.'

Georgie knew there was nothing she could do to change it and tried to stay positive and fit in as much as she could

Liz said the family were devastated when Georgie was diagnosed with another brain tumour in 2009.

She said: 'She had more surgery in March last year and doctors removed what they could, but after only two months of chemotherapy they said there was nothing else they could do - it was a terminal prognosis, three months.

'Georgie knew there was nothing she could do to change it and tried to stay positive and fit in as much as she could.

'She knew there was no sense in getting really down because it was going to happen and she wanted to reassure the kids.

'She always kept them informed with what was happening and was very open.

'She didn't want to know how long she had but she knew once she had the terminal prognosis that it would be quite a short period of time.'

Liz said Georgie had an inner strength that helped her through and she would use the hospices' day service twice a week for eight months.

She said: 'She really looked forward to it and would have come here five days a week if she could - she loved it.

'She got involved in the art project and had her work displayed in the Southern General. It was a confidence-building exercise with her because her condition it had been wiped it away with her condition.

Georgie Boyd (top left) knew her time was more precious than most, so the couple planned the wedding within days, decorating the building with candles and purple balloons, Georgies favourite colour

Georgie Boyd (top left) knew her time was more precious than most, so the couple planned the wedding within days, decorating the building with candles and purple balloons, Georgies favourite colour

'She got her confidence back here and that was able to help her make her own choices and decisions.

'She felt safe at the hospice, they helped her to deal with things and she got so much joy out of coming here.'

Plans are underway to build a new hospice on the site next to Bellahouston Park, with direct access from patient bedrooms to the outdoors, and will be extremely beneficial for patients and their families.

Liz said: 'When Georgie was upstairs in the ward, she would look out the window and would just want to go and feel the wind and the rain, so that accessibility will make a big difference to people.'

Liz was at home with Georgie when she died.

Since her death, Liz and George have ensured that a little of piece of Georgie is always with them.

'My husband and I like to travel. Georgie's ashes have been scattered everywhere we go, from places in Glasgow to Turkey, Egypt, Spain, Italy and France.'


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