Langley mother undergoes chemotherapy days before completing Race for Life

A MOTHER-OF-TWO who was diagnosed with breast cancer two days before Christmas was surrounded by family and friends as she took part in Race for Life at the weekend.

Michelle Barnett, from Langley, near Norwich, had undergone a round of gruelling chemotherapy just five days before she took part in the event at the Norfolk showground to raise money for Cancer Research UK.

Mrs Barnett was working for Great Yarmouth and Waveney PCT in Beccles as a project support manager when she was diagnosed with the disease.

The fit and active 36-year-old had been enjoying life to the full, but sought medical advice after experiencing discomfort and a problem with her arm. She was diagnosed with a grade three cancer and has undergone two surgeries in a bid to beat the disease.

She is now halfway through her chemotherapy treatment which will be followed by three weeks of daily radiotherapy.

Mrs Barnett said: “It has been a very tough time, but I have received fantastic support from the Big C local cancer charity and the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital. They have been a tower of strength to my husband David and my mum.”

Mrs Barnett had taken part in Race for Life in previous years and decided this year would be no different.

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She said: “I didn’t see this year was any different, purely except it was going to be harder. It was a challenge and an opportunity to give myself something to aim for.”

About 20 friends, family and work colleagues joined Mrs Barnett at the showground on Saturday.

The group included Mrs Barnett’s mother Lesley Bradfield, her 11-year-old daughter Jazmin with the family dog Daisey, 19-year-old step daughter Vicki, close friends, neighbours and work colleagues from Great Yarmouth and Waveney PCT.

Mrs Barnett invited about 50 people back to her house afterwards for a barbeque to say a big thank you for their support. Everyone was asked to donate a prize for a raffle, which raised �142 on the day to be donated to the Big C Centre at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital.

Mrs Barnett, who has another daughter Gabi aged 15, who also took part in the event expects to have personally raised more than �900 by taking part and says the group is likely to have raised about �2200 overall.

She thanked everyone who has supported her and said: “I have got two children and enjoy an active and healthy lifestyle. You never think it could ever happen to you. At the moment I am taking each day as it comes.

“I do have days when I go upstairs and cry thinking why me, but then I think to myself I might not visually be the same, but I am still here and that’s all that matters. I hope to be an inspiration to any women who are unfortunate to find themselves in my position and to let them know that it makes you a stronger more determined person to succeed at everything and anything”

Mrs Barnett continues to raise funds. If you would like to sponsor her visit