Nicola Drabble from Southend has good reason to be thankful as she celebrated her 60th birthday in February after recovering from breast cancer.
Mum-of-two Nicola, who was diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of just 44, was told she was cancer-free after a decade of six-monthly appointments to check for the disease.
Nicola is now hosting her annual Pink Summer Ball, an event which she has held since 2008 to raise money for Southend Hospital’s breast unit.
This year’s ball is on June 1. It features a four-course meal, live music and a generous auction. Held at Thorpe Hall golf club, tickets are £50 pp.
Nicola’s battle against breast cancer started in 2003 when she noticed a lump after which she endured a nine-month course of treatment, chemotherapy, followed by a mastectomy and radiotherapy.
“You want to be normal, but cancer holds you hostage,” she recalls. “There are so many hospital appointments which then finish and you are let loose and then what?
Nicola’s natural talent for organisation and her creative flair helped immensely. She makes all her own cards, fancies and table decorations and arranges every last detail of the Ball.
“I want to show it’s not all doom and gloom,” she says. “The Ball is my way of showing my thanks to all those who helped me. It’s a wonderful evening, it’s very warm and welcoming. It’s a good party.
“And it’s a way of raising awareness of breast cancer. Last year there were 100 people there and 12 of the women had had breast cancer – and they all looked fabulous!”
If you would like to book tickets call 07815 848839 for details.