I am taking part in Blackmores Sydney Running Festival 2017 to raise much needed funds for the Leukaemia Foundation of Australia. Their work is really important, and I want to do what I can to help. But there is only so much I can do on my own.
My work colleague and beautiful friend Erin was diagnosed with Leukaemia in July 2014.
Erin had been feeling a bit tired but thought it was just normal, having a 6 month old son and being a working single mum.
Erin was breathless all the time and had bruises on her arms and legs that couldn't really be explained. Erin had made an appointment to see her GP but after a severe breathless episode her colleagues encouraged her to go to the GP sooner. Erin saw her doctor that same day, and she was hospitalised that very day for two months. Erin was diagnosed with a rare and acute form of Leukaemia called APML, which caused her to suffer many side effects during those 2 months. Erin had a brain haemorrhage and several acute infections.
I still clearly remember the day I found out. I was sitting at my desk at work when she rang to tell me (we work at different ends of Tasmania – 300 kilometres apart), the devastating news.
In January this year I did my first marathon and after crossing the line I knew it was the first of many. When I was about 36kms into it, my legs were burning but all I could think about was Erin and it was nothing compared to the challenges she had faced. My first marathon will stay with me forever but running for a special cause so close to my heart will mean everything to me.
Erin is honestly by far the strongest person I know. If anyone deserves health & happiness it is her. This whole time she has been sick, she is continually worrying about everyone else. Erin is always so positive no matter what, even though she is very unwell. She has been such a fighter through her horrific battle. Erin has made me realise just how important life really is.
In September last year Erin ceased treatment and began working towards her 5 years in remission which is how long it takes to be considered cured. Very sadly just six weeks in she started experiencing several serious health issues so she went back to the doctor.
In November last year Erin relapsed only this time the disease had mutated and was mainly in her central nervous system instead of in her blood and marrow which is a very rare condition. Erin required urgent treatment in Sydney and sadly spent Christmas, her precious little boy Jackson’s 3rd birthday and her birthday in hospital. Her treatment continues today and will do for some time yet (years) but Erin takes it all in her stride and we hold high hopes that it will be successful so she can watch her little boy grow into a man.
You can help too, by donating to my page. Any amount you can give makes a difference!
You can also support me by encouraging others to get involved, too. Please email the link to my page to your friends and family, or share it on social media.
Thank you for your generosity and support -- it means a lot to me. Together we can help Leukaemia Foundation of Australia create the world we want to see.
Love Kristy xxxx