SURVIVOR: Annelize Van Niekerk fought breast cancer and is now helping others through their journeys with cancer at Relay for Life event across the region.
SURVIVOR: Annelize Van Niekerk fought breast cancer and is now helping others through their journeys with cancer at Relay for Life event across the region. Kristen Booth

'My girls thought I would die': Super mum conquers cancer

A MUM of two felt like superwoman with her "chemo hair" after she battled cancer and dedicated her life to helping others.

Annelize Van Niekerk was 38 years old with no family history of cancer when she found a lump in her breast and said it was the biggest shock of her life.

"I had my lump removed and my doctor was so confident that is was nothing, so I was fine, " she said.

"I was waiting and waiting, and when I went in he was really concerned and asking if I was okay.

"But when I saw him, he said 'I'm very sorry to say but you have cancer'."

Mrs Van Niekerk said her heart dropped to her stomach and her eyes filled with tears.

"He kept telling me what had to happen from there but it was just a blur," Mrs Van Niekerk said.

"It's the worst thing to get your head around," she said.

"It was so scary and I've got two girls who thought their mum was going to die."

SURVIVOR: Annelize Van Niekerk fought breast cancer and is now helping others through their cancer journeys at Relay for Life.
SURVIVOR: Annelize Van Niekerk fought breast cancer and is now helping others through their cancer journeys at Relay for Life. Kristen Booth

Mrs Van Niekerk undertook three surgeries in two weeks to remove the cancer that had spread from her breast.

When chemotherapy started, the family moved to the Coast to recover and she later joined Cancer Council to help support others through their journeys.

"I feel like superwoman," she said.

"This isn't my natural (hair) colour, it's my chemo regrowth and I'm rocking it."

Mrs Van Niekerk said Relay for Life was a big hug event and she was proud to see more then 550 Sunshine Coast participants walking at the Kawana Stadium over the weekend.

"We hug the survivors, we hug the people we've lost and we support each other, it's just hugs all round," she said.

"It's so lovely to be part of cancer council as a survivor because I can give so much and I understand so much and I think my passion is way too much and always comes out."

The Sunshine Coast event reached the target of $65,500 before the event started.

"I'm so proud of this event, it's very special," she said.

"I know hard it is and how heart breaking it is and I love supporting other people."



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