A Cambridge mum recovering from breast cancer is determined to support her daughter running for Cancer Research UK, just three weeks after major surgery.
Just 18 days ago, Samantha Ambrose (45) was undergoing a mastectomy and reconstructive surgery after discovering a lump in her breast.
On Sunday she will be supporting her daughter as she takes part in the 5k Race for Life on Jesus Green, Cambridge, before an anxious 24 hour wait to find out if her surgery has been a success and she’s cancer free.
Samantha, from Bottisham, said: “Race for Life is going to be a very emotional day for me and the whole family. My eldest daughter Chloe is taking part, and nothing is going to stop me from being there with her. She was there for me and now it’s my turn to support her.”
Samantha, a Dental Lead Receptionist, will be cheering on Chloe and supporting work colleagues running on her behalf, with her husband Paul (53) and her youngest daughter Lauren (21).
She said: "I’m a very positive person. Three weeks ago, I was on the table. The operation went well, they took away fat from my tum for a reconstruction, so I got a tummy tuck out of it as well, what more could you ask for."
The Mother and daughter are standing together on stage in front of thousands of runners to share their story and promote how having a positive mental attitude helped them in their fight against cancer.
Chloe, who works for a social media agency, added: “As a family we are still waiting on mum’s results to see if she is all clear but, regardless of the outcome, we will be ok with a strong mental attitude. It’s a mental journey as well as a physical one. We may not be able to control the cancer, but we can control our emotions towards it.”
“Yes, I will be nervous and apprehensive,” added Samantha. “It might be too emotional for me but at least I will be there even if Chloe has to do all of the speaking and just give a bow at the end."
Samantha said she is grateful for the treatment that helped save her life and is proud to be playing a special part at Race for Life.
“I’ve still got my own results to come which is always on my mind but by going to the race I feel I can help. I never thought it would be me who got cancer, not for a million years. It’s a total out of the body experience and even today I still find it hard to believe. My message to everyone is get to know your body, if something feels different get yourself checked out, the sooner the better, take control.”
Chloe, who regularly posts her own messages on social media under the tag @missgingerfreckles, recently posted a picture of herself holding two oranges with the message ‘Check your boobs!’
She added: “I’m a micro influencer and if I’ve reached out to one person to check their boobs and it changes their life then I’ve made a difference. Mum is a great example of taking what life throws at her in her stride. There have been a few tears from her but she sucks it up quickly and gets on with things. Even now when she’s waiting on her results she’s so open about her own journey and letting people know that life does go on.”
Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life, in partnership with Tesco, is an inspiring series of 5k, 10k, Pretty Muddy and Pretty Muddy Kids events which raise millions of pounds every year to help beat cancer by funding crucial research.
Gemma Turpin, Event Manager at Jesus Green, said: “We’re very grateful to Samantha and Chloe for showing their support.
“By following their lead people can make a real difference in the fight against cancer.
“One in two people in the UK will be diagnosed with cancer, at some point during their lifetime, but the good news is more people are surviving the disease now than ever before. Cancer survival in the UK has doubled since the early 1970s and Cancer Research UK’s work has been at the heart of that progress."
Gemma added: “Every day, around 90 people are diagnosed with cancer in the East of England. To make a significant difference in the fight against cancer, we need to harness as much energy and commitment as possible, and that’s why we need everyone in Cambridge to join in.
“We encourage our participants to help raise money in whatever way they like – there are lots of ideas on the Race for Life website - because this allows Cancer Research UK to fund vital research that saves lives. This includes research studies such as the Personalised Breast Cancer Programme which give patients in Cambridge access to the latest treatments.”
Cancer Research UK’s life-saving work relies on the public’s support. Thanks to the generosity of its supporters, the charity was able to spend over £54 million last year in Cambridge on some of the UK’s leading scientific and clinical research.
To enter Race for Life today visit raceforelife.org or call 0300 123 0770.