Mum of 16 reveals she is facing second cancer battle: 'A lot can happen in a year'

Picture: Instagram
Picture: Instagram 

Jeni Bonell, mum an incredible 16 times over, has revealed she has been diagnosed with cancer for a second time.

Posting to Instagram yesterday, Jeni, 51, shared how just a year ago she had been speaking to high school students about her first bout in 2017.

"A lot can happen in a year," she captioned side by side photos of herself on the way to the talk last year and from her hospital bed yesterday.

"12 months ago (2020) standing in front of an entire highschool speaking about my cancer journey in 2017. Speaking to educate, advocating for early detection and hoping to find a cure," she continued.

"This year (2021) laying in a hospital bed, fighting for my own good health, thankful for skilled doctors and still hoping for a cure."

Adding that she hoped in another 12 months she would be back helping to spread awareness. 

The mum to one of Australia's biggest families revealed last month that in a routine check-up as part of her recovery from Thyroid cancer doctors had found a 'nasty' tumour in her kidney and were investigating if it was malignant.  

Last week Jeni underwent surgery, with husband Ray saying the operation had gone well and thanking fans for their 'continued prayers' as she recovers. 


Daughter Natalie (their fourth eldest) posted a YouTube update on her mum, saying the family had both good and bad news to share. 

"The doctor's have confirmed that it was cancer, however they were able to remove it with clear margins. That's really good news for us," she said. 

"So she will just be recovering at home, the doctors have given her clear instructions just to take it easy and keep her feet up. And as you know she's a very busy woman, so this will be very difficult for her just to relax and maybe ask for some help from others." 

In a separate post, the family said it had been 'scary to know that this insidious disease was inside this beautiful woman's body' but she 'is strong and continuing to recover well'. 

Jeni also recently shared how she and Ray would have liked more children, but after suffering four miscarriages accepted it may not happen.

The pair are parents to Jesse, Brooke, Claire, Natalie, Karl, Samuel, Cameron, Sabrina, Tim, Brandon, Eve, Nate, Rachel, Eric, Damian and Katelyn.