‘What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, right?!’
This is one of the most important lessons I have learnt from my fight with cancer. Seeing the look in my doctor’s eyes as he broke the news of my diagnosis is an experience that no 26 year-old ever wants to face. But I have come through my battle with a renewed passion for everything life has to offer and for that I am truly grateful.
Cancer irreparably changes your life. But I am fortunate that coming out the other side of this sobering journey has given me the drive to live a more inspiring life. I am determined to achieve goals that I may not have strived for before.
With this newfound enthusiasm for approaching my future, I have decided to conquer the arduous Kokoda Trail. Despite the best of intentioned advice from countless friends and family members advising that this may in fact get the better of me, I am throwing caution to the wind. This adventure will mark my two year anniversary being cancer free and I will celebrate by pushing myself to the limit to raise funds and awareness for a cause that is close to my heart – Cure Cancer.
Cancer is a rollercoaster ride; physically, mentally and emotionally. It tests your strength and your spirit more than you could ever imagine. But despite this, you continue to put one step in front of the other and you carry on – with the exception of a few duvet days of course! It’s certainly not an easy road to take but it gives you a mental toughness which I plan to use to my advantage on Kokoda.
One in two families are touched by cancer in their lifetime and Cure Cancer Australia is determined to improve prevention, detection and treatment outcomes to reduce the suffering caused by cancer. Cancer doesn’t just impact the person dealing with the illness. It is awful to put your nearest and dearest through the stress and pain of seeing you sick but it is their unwavering support that helps get you through on those bad days.
My family and friends were my rocks and I know that I will have their unfaltering support again throughout this new journey. There were tears, tantrums and meltdowns before – and I’m sure Kokoda will be no different! I am blessed to have such a fantastic support network around me that will be in my corner cheering me on as I embark on this trek.
Those that know me well will understand when I say that I’m not sure if the biggest challenge for me will be the grade 5/5 challenge or roughing it camping! I had sore legs for over a week after walking down Table Mountain in South Africa and my idea of a holiday is a 5 Star Resort. But I am focused and determined to get fit and take on my next life changing challenge.
My weeks are now focused on training hard in the gym and getting out to the many beautiful National Parks surrounding Sydney on the weekends. All of this will help to ensure I am well prepared for this fundraising adventure that has been organised by Inspired Adventures.
I have kicked off my fundraising efforts with gusto. I have a determination to not only raise as many funds as possible for Cure Cancer but also increase awareness about the fantastic work they do.
It feels great to be in a position where I can turn my experience into something positive that could help prevent others from battling cancer.
To donate: http://kokodachallengeforcurecancer.gofundraise.com.au/page/MissKmass
To follow my progress:
Cancer Council NSW would like to acknowledge the traditional custodians of the land on which we live and work.We would also like to pay respect to elders past and present and extend that respect to all other Aboriginal people.