A CANCER survivor is looking forward to marking her fifth year of being clear by bouncing, running and cycling her way between the two hospitals who helped her on the road to recovery.
Nicola Dawn was 26 and had just qualified as a solicitor when she was diagnosed with hodgkin lymphoma and her life was turned upside down.
But the 32-year-old is now looking forward to marking the day she had a stem cell transplant, which is a form of bone marrow transplant, by covering the 135 miles between Warrington and Nottingham City Hospital on bikes, spacehoppers and rollerblades.
She added: “I was fit and healthy and just thought I had a nasty cough but it got worse and worse and then I was told it was cancer at Warrington Hospital.
“I had 12 lots of chemotherapy over the space of six months but then it came back three months later.
“I was put on the register with the Anthony Nolan Trust and luckily found a match within a week in August 2009 before the transplant in November that year at home in Nottingham.”
The operation meant Nicola first had to have 10 days intense chemotherapy to ‘annihilate’ her immune system before the transplant could take place on November 18, 2009.
So far it appears the operation has worked and Nicola has got her fingers crossed things continue that way.
To mark what she describes as a ‘positive anniversary’ in November this year, Nicola alongside friends and family will be taking on the 10 day trek finishing on the fifth anniversary of her transplant.
The solicitor, who now works in Manchester, added: “I wanted to do something to raise awareness for the Anthony Nolan Trust and get more people on the register.
“It’s lovely how many people want to get involved and I wanted to add some fun bits to the journey that kids will enjoy like three-legged and egg and spoon races.
“But I also wanted it to be a hard challenge as the lead up to the transplant was really gruelling and knocked the stuffing out of me.
“Just having a shower or walking to the shop was a massive effort but I still thank my lucky stars every day I was so fortunate.”
Donate via uk.virginmoneygiving.com/NicsNovemberchallenge135milesbyanymeans.