A Thurgoona mother grateful for the help her sick toddler received is running the streets this month as a way to say thanks.
Jayde Butler aims to jog 85 kilometres – she’s already done more than 30 – as part of the Cancer Council fundraiser The March Charge.
Her motivation comes from events that began last September, when her son Oliver, then 15 months, had an abnormally-shaped testicle.
“I took him to the doctor’s and the doctor sent us straight to the emergency room and then probably about three hours later … ‘I’m sorry, your son has cancer’,” Miss Butler said.
“It absolutely broke me. I’d rather have it for him if I could have, it was very, very devastating.”
Naturally, the youngster himself didn’t realise the seriousness of this news.
“It was us that were crying and trying to compose ourselves and he was sitting there smiling at us,” his mother said.
“I remember when we were in the hospital, we were waiting in the emergency department and he was playing with all the other kids and laughing.”
Things moved swiftly, the testicular cancer was removed, and Oliver received more treatment at Royal Children’s Hospital.
“It was an aggressive cancer, it wasn’t there and then seriously it was like over two weeks,” Miss Butler said.
“We didn’t have to do chemo or anything like that, we were really lucky, it was just isolated to the one testicle and immediate lymph nodes.”
Now 21 months, Oliver is back to normal health, although he will need regular checks in the future.
“It’s still something that’s in the back of your mind, every time you give him a bath,” Miss Butler said.
Keen to support all the other children and families fighting cancer, Miss Butler signed up for The March Charge and has already raised more than $1600 towards her $2000 target.
The online personal challenge allows people to elect a distance that they then walk or run solo or with others anywhere and anytime during March.
Cancer Council NSW acting director of fundraising Adelaide Thompson said the money raised would help fund cancer research, support people affected by cancer and run prevention and advocacy programs.
“The March Charge is a great opportunity to jump-start your physical exercise, push yourself a little further and reduce your own cancer risk,” she said.
A runner before Oliver’s birth, Miss Butler lost 20 kilograms training for The March Charge in the last couple of months.
“I just pop Ollie in the pram and run around Thurgoona,” she said.
- Donate via The March Charge website