Cancer is happening right now, which is why I'm taking part in a Race for Life Pretty Muddy to raise money and save lives.
Last year my sister Christine was diagnosed with breast cancer. Fortunately it was in the very early stages, so with 2 operations and a course of radiotherapy, she made a full recovery. Even so it was a traumatic and worrying thing for her to go through but she received excellent treatment and care throughout the experience.
One of our friends, Tarli, was also diagnosed with cancer in the last year - she too is clear of it now but is still undergoing an intensive period of chemotherapy, and counting down the weeks and days until she can ring the bell.
When a friend or family member is going through this, it is difficult for us to know how we can help. We can be supportive and we can help with the practical things but the really important work is of course done by the experts
The 'Pretty Muddy' race will be quite a tough physical challenge for me but I feel it is nothing compared with the physical challenge that all those with cancer face every day of their diagnosis. I am doing this to say 'thanks' for the work Cancer Research has done to enable early diagnosis, treatment and care of this illness. I will be thinking of Christine, Tarli and others who have gone through this in the past and also remembering a few people who we lost to it.