In life, there are a set of predetermined milestones we encounter (some of us more than others). Milestones that are recognised — and celebrated — by society. From your first birthday, through to reaching your teenage and adult years; graduating primary school, high school and university; becoming engaged, married and giving birth to your first child.

Then there are the milestones that you never expect to have paved into your life’s path: the hurdles thrown in life. Cancer treatment creates many milestones to reach, surpass, then celebrate.

I recently celebrated one more milestone in my recovery: I returned to the skies. After 15 months away from the world at 40,000 ft, I put on my wings and revisited my past life. To say I was nervous was an understatement; I felt like it was my first day in the sky, ever. But then I boarded the aircraft and it was as if I had never left (although the olive oil is in a different stowage now…)

The best part about returning to work was running into friends whom have been supportive from afar through my recovery. It was a reminder as to why I love the job — the friends you make flying make up for the jet lagged nights scrolling through 50 channels of infomercials in the US (party animal). As well as the friends who have known about my treatment, there were many familiar faces that were non-the-wiser to my past year, and just thought I was sporting a new hairstyle.

When anticipating my first flight back, I hoped I would have a friend onboard to ‘hold my hand’. And that I did. I was fortunate that the manager was an old friend. I was even luckier that he happened to be checking his bag in at the same time so I basically followed him to where I needed to go. Extreme holding of hand was required.


With the last milestone for treatment — returning to work — I can put 2014 behind me. I look forward to swapping cancer milestones to life goals next year.

While setting my goals for next year I am affirming my two mantra’s to live by: To stay humble, and hopeful.

I am making these two things my focus for everything I do in 2015.


Bring on 2015!


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