For my 'Big 50' birthday in April, instead of gifts, I'm asking for donations to Strathcarron Hospice Charity, and I hope that you'll consider contributing as a way of celebrating with me.

Alongside my wonderful family, friends, and caring staff at FVRH, I have also received amazing support from the Strathcarron Hospice specialist nurse team, post treatment for breast cancer in 2022.

Strathcarron Hospice supports people and their families across Forth Valley, Cumbernauld and Kilsyth, living with life-limiting conditions, to live well and die well, providing free care within the Hospice and at home, wherever the care is needed.

Like so many others whose lives have been touched by cancer, I found the journey through treatment difficult at times. On the other side, getting back to 'normality' can be challenging too, dealing with longer lasting side effects.

My personal experience, of incredible support from a Strathcarron Hospice specialist nurse, who visited me at home, and talked at length about my worries and needs, has meant the world to me (I hope she knows who she is if she reads this).

She's 'keeping me on a short leash', and together with her colleagues at the Hospice, and ongoing care from FVRH, I will hopefully soon be back on my feet and ready for the next 50 years of living life to the full!

Christine McGillivray