In May 2020 my daughter Jo, aged 36, was diagnosed with Hodgkin Lymphoma, stage 2A.
At that time she along with her husband Jared and two children Riley and Caley were living in Ulverstone, Tasmania. All of Jo’s and Jared’s family are here in NSW and at that time they were in ‘lockdown’ due to a Covid-19 outbreak in Burnie and no-one was able to travel to Tasmania.
Initially Jo was to receive 2 cycles of ABVD then a review and a second PET scan. This they managed on their own with no family assistance. However following the 2nd PET scan it was discovered that in fact Jo had Stage 3 Hodgkin Lymphoma and required a further 6 cycles of treatment. I was eventually able to travel to Tasmania in July and able to assist with the family and support both Jo and Jared at this time.
Jo and Jared were extremely grateful for the Lymphoma nurses who assisted them in their journey and as a thank you from myself and my husband we decided to extend an invitation to our family and friends to raise money for Lymphoma Australia. Jo is recovering here in NSW (they have moved back to be near the families).
After a discussion with Jo & Jared we formed a team called “The J’s” and within that team our friends Rosemary & Dave agreed to join us in the very beautiful walk from Bondi to Manly. We called the team the “Walkie Talkies” and planned to approach the 80km over 4 days. I was very apprehensive at first as the most I have ever walked in one session was 10km so I expressed my concerns. But seeing my daughter complete 6 months of chemo without any complaints made me realise that anyone who has to go through treatment for any type of Lymphoma faces a challenge every day.
“The J’s” team consists of the ‘Walkie Talkies” Rosemary & Dave, Bob & myself. Also my other daughter Suzie who lives in Parkes, NSW has decided to swim 30km in the local pool, that equates to 600 laps.
Jared and Jo have made commitments to also raise awareness by taking on 100km either running, walking or swimming.
The “Walkie Talkies”will continue to walk through the month of March and hopefully raise the awareness in the community about Lymphomas.