A Morpeth resident who underwent surgery and treatment for a brain tumour is taking on an abseil challenge to raise money to help find a cure for the disease.
Natalie Edington’s diagnosis came out of the blue – she suffered a seizure in bed and was rushed to hospital before having a scan.
She was given a prognosis of three-to-five years with the grade three anaplastic astrocytoma tumour, but now, 10 years on, she is facing her fear to take part in the sponsored event.
She is summoning up her courage to abseil the BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art in Newcastle to raise funds for the charity Brain Tumour Research tomorrow (Saturday).
There to cheer her on will be husband Nat and their two children – Grace, 19, and Matthew, 16.
Natalie said: “We have been through such a frightening time together and now I am doing my best to make the most of every day and to raise awareness of this awful disease.
“After my surgery 10 years ago, I had radiotherapy and chemotherapy and was given a life expectancy of three-to-five years.
“I am still here and want to celebrate that and give hope to others.
“There is no doubt this has had a massive impact on my life. It has brought huge challenges and means I was not able to return to my work as a medical administrator in a hospital.
“I have also been left with problems with my memory and left-sided weakness.
“But I am proud that I have defied the odds to still be here. I have scans every six months to see if there has been any change in my tumour and, for now at least, things are good.
“I have never done anything like this abseil, which is a 131ft drop, and I know I will be terrified, but I that hope people will support me in doing my bit to fund much-needed research into finding a cure.”
Following her surgery and successful treatment, Natalie and her family resolved to make the very best of their time together and have enjoyed special holidays, including a dream trip to Barbados, and realised their long-held dream to build their own home.
Matthew Price, community fund-raising manager for Brain Tumour Research in the North East, said: “We are extremely grateful to Natalie and wish her well with the abseil.
“I hope people will be inspired by her story.”
To make a donation to Brain Tumour Research via Natalie’s Justgiving page online, go to www.justgiving.com/fundraising/natalieedington