THEY'RE in it for the long haul and TV3 star Aisling O'Loughlin said her job is to be strong for her family as her partner Nick MacInnes is being treated for cancer.
The Xpose presenter and her other half discovered that he has acute myeloid leukaemia, a blood cell cancer, three weeks ago, and well-known photographer Nick (47) has been in St Vincent's Hospital since the news.
Mum-of-two Aisling told the Herald that he was expected to remain in a ward undergoing chemotherapy for several weeks to come.
“We'll be in this for the long haul so we're just trying to normalise it all at the moment,” the 35-year-old said.
“He's already been in over two weeks, and it's a lengthy process of check-ups after he eventually comes home.”
Dr Barbara Bonnar at the Bray Medical Centre noticed Nick did not look well during a routine check-up of the couple's son Louis, who was born in December.
“I've been a GP for nine years now and our training and experience teaches us to pick up on things,” the doctor said.
“An early diagnosis is the most important thing – the earlier the better when it comes to a cancer diagnosis.”
Aisling said that although it would take months for Nick to get back to full health, she will still return to TV3 from maternity leave in May.
“It's a case of needs must to be honest – I have to work,” she said.
“It's not time for crying. You have to brave and we're just so thankful that Nick's responding so well and that he hasn't really suffered. It hasn't been drawn out.
“Yes, cancer is serious, but we're grateful that he has not suffered too much pain and that the support in hospital is amazing.
“We're getting loads of help. Nick's mum and my parents are all over, so I'm availing of it and saying yes to everything they offer,” Aisling said. “Two babies are wonderful, but it is hard work and I'm in and out of hospital most days.
“We're humbled and heartened by the support from everyone. We've have endless offers of babysitters and, to be honest, I have been a bit teary from that side of it all.”
Nick began to feel unwell at Christmas. “He had a bad cold, as everyone does at Christmas time, but he was also very tired, even after a full night’s sleep,” Aisling said.
“He also would get quite out of breath after lifting our two-year-old Patrick up |the stairs.”
Nick's form of cancer is not hereditary and doctors told Aisling that it can be caused from smoking.
“Thankfully the cigarettes will stay in the bin from now on and Nick will not be going back on them,” she said.