Within the past year, Dean Brett has experienced many facets of tragedy. Now, he’s sharing his daunting experience with the world. According to the Mirror, the 22-year-old Cowdenbeath FC defender and his girlfriend, Gemma Porteous, were building a life together. They’d welcomed twin daughters, and their lives were going well. But, unfortunately, their lives took a devastating turn when their daughter, Mollie, died four weeks later.
“I’d never lost anyone before Mollie. It was hard when she died, really hard. After she passed away, she looked so beautiful and peaceful. She’d been really ill but when I saw her in her little coffin she was beautiful. It was a struggle to cope with her dying.”
Then, just three months later after the couple lost their baby, they were hit with more tragic news. After suffering excruciating back and leg pain, Gemma was diagnosed with spinal cancer. In September of 2014, Gemma was hospitalized to have a tumor removed. Unfortunately, she never recovered. With the exception of Christmas and Hogmanay, Gemma spent the majority of her days hospitalized until her untimely death four months later. In January of 2015, she died at the age of 22, reports the Daily Mail.
“It all happened really quickly. We had been planning for the future as we never expected it to be so bad. She was never really ill with the chemotherapy and for a while things were actually looking all right. She never complained or asked, ‘Why me?’ She just got on with it. Gemma never knew she was dying but once or twice when we were talking about things she would say, ‘What if I don’t make it?’ She was in hospital from September until she died in January but sometimes she would be lively for a few days. I kept telling myself I was just going to wait and see because there was no point in me getting a wee bit of hope.”
During the exclusive interview with the Daily Record, Brett revealed he never told his ailing girlfriend about her grim prognosis in an effort to keep her spirits up.
“I just told her she had an infection and she was really tired. On the Monday before she died, the doctors said it was possibly a bleed to the brain or the cancer getting worse. I knew then in myself things were bad but I didn’t say anything to my mum or family. The doctors and nurses at the cancer unit in the Western General were amazing. They tried so hard.”
Brett shared details about how the double tragedy has impacted his life and how he struggles with the grim reality on a daily basis. He also discussed how there are times when he grieves much more than others. He recounted moments where the tragic incidents make him feel as if they’ve just occurred because it all happened so fast.
“I’ll miss Gemma and Mollie every day for the rest of my life but Mia and I are going to be all right. We’re survivors,” Brett said. “You have to just get on with it and I’m doing that. I just live my life. Because of what happened with Gemma and Mollie, and both being so young, you feel you need to do that for them.
“I was on a bus the other week going to physiotherapy and suddenly thought, ‘This time last year Gemma was pregnant, Mollie and Mia were born, Gemma got cancer and now they’re both gone.’ It still doesn’t feel real. I do get annoyed sometimes but I try not to sit for hours thinking about everything that’s happened. I’ve got to be strong for Mia but sometimes I look at her and see Mollie and Gemma in her. I wonder what Mollie and Gemma are doing now.”
Brett is now working to rebuild his life following the double tragedy. Now, Mia is the inspiration that keeps him going, saying, “I love being a dad. I’ve always been a happy, positive person and I’m still the same person. I try to be positive for Mia’s sake.”
Dean Brett’s touching double tragedy story has gone viral.
[Image(s) via Facebook]