In January 2008, at 8 years old I had begun to experience pain and swelling in my right tibia. Originally it was put down to growing pains and shin splints, and after a little while the pain had not subsided.
Doctors then gave the diagnosis of a bone infection (osteomyelitis), and after a short while of antibiotic treatment there was once again now change. At this point the doctors decided that the best route would be a biopsy, to find that it was Ewing sarcoma.
I was diagnosed and underwent a years’ worth of chemotherapy at the Bristol Children’s Hospital, during which I had an internal prosthesis fitted from the mid femur to my ankle at the Royal Orthopaedic Hospital in Birmingham.
The chemotherapy would make me feel extremely tired and would often feel very weak. I would get high temperatures in between my rounds of chemotherapy, meaning more stays in hospital. I was lucky enough to get through the chemotherapy without any infections.
On December the 14th, 2008 (at age 9) I was officially in remission. The chemotherapy was very effective and was back in good health very fast.
Between 2009-2016 I had many operations at Birmingham’s Royal Orthopaedic Hospital, in order to get the internal prosthesis to work effectively. Unfortunately, I had adhesion scarring that led to limited flexion of my knee joint, and many more operations.
Eventually the operations caught up to me in 2016 when my internal prosthesis had got infected, leading to my decision to have my right leg amputated at the mid femur.
Since this point I have become much more mobile and have travelled to some amazing areas of the world.
My cancer was a driving force for me to get into fitness, as I didn’t want people to view me as a weak or frail individual and has now led me to becoming a personal trainer.
I have no regrets with the route that I took, but I do believe that my amputation has led to a much better quality of life, when compared to the internal prosthesis. And although it was a daunting decision at the time, I believe that the amputation of my right leg is the greatest thing I had ever done!
The staff at Bristol children’s hospital and the Royal Orthopaedic Hospital were absolutely amazing. And the support of friends and family would always give a boost of positivity that helped me get through my treatment, and years of hospital visits.
My message to anyone going through this, is to keep positive! There will be many tough times, and negative thoughts when dealing with cancer. However, being positive and remaining happy with the small things in life is what will keep you going!
You can follow Cody's personal training account on Instagram - @cwalker_pt