Mum, nurse and wife Gemma was diagnosed with breast cancer at just 27 years old. Gemma bravely stood up to the disease every step of the way.
"I don't care what I have to do to fight this – I'll do it. I will leave no stone unturned."
Gemma recalls the shock and fear she felt upon learning her diagnosis of HER-2 positive breast cancer- an extremely aggressive form of breast cancer that often affects younger women, at a time when they have young families. There is no good way to tell your children you have cancer, and Gemma had been putting off breaking the news to her husband, and two young children; knowing it would shatter their world.
Devastated by the news but determined to do whatever it takes to get Gemma through treatment, Gemma's family rallied in support as she bravely stood up to the disease every step of the way, undergoing chemotherapy, radiation, and a double mastectomy. The treatment Gemma endured was incredibly hard on her, both physically and mentally.
"It's hard not recognising the person you see in the mirror. Your hair goes. You put on weight. Your family tell you that you're beautiful but you don't feel it."
For women like Gemma, what's infinitely harder is facing a stage of cancer where there is no treatment. It's a race against time to find new treatments to help women facing this aggressive form of breast cancer.
“That's why I'm so passionate about supporting research," says Gemma. “I mean, I could sleep at night if I knew that there was a treatment for my cancer if it came back."