Love lost, read and found
To read Katherine’s Marcher’s team story please click here
The Marsden March – Why do we march as a team?
No one should have to die just months after being told they are ill!
But the cruel irony of ‘life’ is people do! At 42, my wife Katherine was one of those cheated of the fullness of life.
The Royal Marsden is a haven for people like her. Many who come to stay at the place will very sadly soon face the same fate, and die. Despite their own determination, the efforts of others around them and the hopes of loved ones, family and friends, Cancer will snatch them away just the same. At that prayers fall momentarily silent as the living feel slain by the following devastation. The hospital becomes a tower where our loved ones were once imprisoned by fate.
But despite the poor odds many continue to flock to there in the hope of being the lucky ones to escape with their lives. Not all face such a grim ending of course and that’s why they come. The hospital is a last hope when all other is taken. You put your life in their hands and hope that they can restore you to your life and your family.
Leaving Katherine at the end of each day in hospital was the most heart wrenching thing I ever had to do. But our 3 young daughters needed at least one of us to come home for them too. Like me, all they could do was put their trust in the hospital to get mummy better and send her home too. We said our hated goodnights to mummy one night in the ward, when she was poorly and could not move or walk well. With a sunken heart we walked out to the car in the car park. I started to drive out of the grounds of the hospital when an ache in my heart made me stop the car and look back. I scanned the many windows of the hospital and in that instant Katherine appeared at one of them and was waving and in the exhilaration of the moment we all got out and waved backed and could not stop. It was a very ‘very’ precious moment.
I drove with tears flowing and wondered what she was thinking in that moment. It must have been so hard for Katherine knowing how devastated we would be if she died and she must have feared even more for her daughters wondering if they would have a father strong enough to cope. Would her illness have more casualties than just her own death? Was she thinking our happy family life was dying too?
At the hospital they do amazing things for many people suffering with Cancer. Some get cured completely and others live very full lives. Some unfortunately aren’t so lucky but are given the same shot just the same, and more and more people are being helped to beat their illness. This is the reason why we were there; we wanted every chance to be one of the lucky ones to be cured.
Sometimes in life in a given moment you wake up and find yourself somewhere or in a situation and you don’t know exactly how you got there or what you are doing anymore and all you can do is to put one foot in front of the other. I woke up in a haze one morning, four months after her death and not knowing how I got there, in a team of family and friends, I found myself putting one foot in front of the other and marching on the tower to help raise funds for the hospital in Kath’s memory.
Katherine’s Marchers are no different to any other team or individual marching the Marsden March. We all want the same thing. We want no one to see their loved ones taken by a disease robbing them of the fullness of life. We all have to die sometime, but we all deserve the chance to live too. That’s why we march, so the hospital can continue making huge strides towards beating this horrible disease and freeing the unfortunate ones that get trapped in its towers.
The sponsored walk last year was a blur but an amazing eye opener on how many people are affected by Cancer in life. We think we are all alone when it strikes in our lives but we are all in it together. As I turned towards the hospital finish line I looked up and I could still see Katherine there waving at us from that window, I still see her waving at me.
Let’s help set all like her free.
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Together we can help beat it.