After losing her younger sister to bone cancer, Sarah, in her own words shares why she's taking on this incredible challenge and why she wants YOU to help.
My name’s Sarah and I wanted to come on here and tell you a little about what we’re doing for the Bone Cancer Research Trust this year and how you can get involved! But firstly, I want to tell you why. Back in August 2004, my little Sister, Caroline, was diagnosed with osteosarcoma at the age of just 9.
By the December, she unfortunately had to have her arm amputated. Over the course of nearly 3 years, Caroline would beat the cancer several times - just to have it return.
By August 2006, our parents were told that there were no other options and that any treatment they used would just buy us more time with Caroline. In April 2007 we had the news of Caroline only having 4 weeks left to live.
And true to the word, 4 weeks later, on May 27th 2007, Caroline, at the age of 12, lost her battle to osteosarcoma. A night full of memories that will never leave me. I was just 15 years old.
But what a lot of siblings feel, like me, looking back now, you became “the person who lost her sister”. What people don’t see after, is the years of upset, mental health issues, grieving that comes with it. Even 12 years later, I’m now 28 and each year seems as hard as the last - to go through monumental life moments; getting engaged, the hen dos and getting married (the hardest thing I’ve ever done without Caroline), graduating University (for those who did), having children, getting older - all without your sibling. It’s easy for people to forget 10 years down the line about what you went though, and to forget that actually, it maybe harder now as an adult than it was back then. When you’re old enough to find drink, the rebellion side of you, that’s when it can hit you hardest about everything you’ve been through. And I’ve battled for years and I’ve been through those stages.
That’s why the Bone Cancer Research Trust means SO much to me now, more so than it ever would’ve done 12 years ago. The Bone Cancer Research Trust has given me a new family and a way of being able to look back more fondly without feeling like if I start thinking about Caroline or bone cancer, I won’t cope.
The Bone Cancer Research Trust is so important to patients going through treatment, to be able to give the VITAL funds for treatment testing and equipment and support, but they’re also so important to people like me who need that support network 10/15/20 years later. For adults or kids; they’re there.
Coming to the conference last year changed my life and I’m eternally grateful that the Bone Cancer Research Trust holds such events - to be able to hear other stories and meet other people. I remember saying “it’s weird being in a room FULL of people that have all been through such a rare experience. It makes me feel like I’m not alone”.
So that’s when I decided that this year, I would take on a challenge! This year myself, my husband Nick and my little pup, Ralph, are running/cycling/walking 3000 miles! But we need YOU to get involved too. If you’re a dog walker, a cyclist, a runner, either in your home or out doing your daily exercise, you can add your miles to our total and get involved!
We have a year to complete these, so be sure to head to our Facebook page
With everything going on, it’s more important than EVER to be raising funds and continue raising money for Bone Cancer Research Trust - to carry on funding treatments and testing, to carry on funding support. So please join Nick, Ralph and I, please keep fundraising and getting involved. Not just for the patients, but for everyone affected by bone cancer.
The Covid-19 pandemic has had a catastrophic impact on UK charities. The Bone Cancer Research Trust alone is facing a loss of over £680,000 this year, but by getting involved in virtual fundraising like Sarah, you could help raise vital funds so we can continue saving lives. We have never needed your support more than right now, so please join #TeamBones now and raise funds at home.