Meanwhile the paper back of 'Driving Home for Christmas' hit the shelves. Thank you to each and everyone of you that bought a copy. I hope you enjoy the story!
If that wasn't enough excitement I was training for 'Strictly Against Breast Cancer.' That was eventful too! My dance partner Damian, pictured above, ended up breaking his thumb during a lift! Oh dear Lord it was terrible. We were doing the final dance from 'Dirty Dancing' which we all know involves running and pretending to dive over the man's head. We'd had a few trials, which were pretty disastrous. As our confidence grew and I considered buying a tiny trampoline (seriously) in order to leap high enough, things slotted into place and we managed the lift. I was high in the air with my arms out like a bird and legs held up when there was a loud cracking sound. In fairness to him, Damian didn't drop me nor did he fling me across the room. Instead he grimaced and set me down. We went our separate ways and when we met up the following day his arm was in plaster. Words like truck sprang to mind.
So the high lift was out and instead we went for a swingy around type job. To go with Damian's broken thumb I was so bruised around my hips that I looked like I'd been mauled by a wild bear. Dancing isn't as glam as you might think people!
The night was brilliant and we were thrilled with our 3rd place trophy! Organised by Breast Cancer Ireland, the money raised will go to cancer research and drug trials. BCI are an amazing charity as they are literally saving people's lives. If it weren't for new drugs and the incredibly positive advances in medicine, I wouldn't be here. So I am honoured to be an ambassador for Breast Cancer Ireland. I hope I'll be involved in lots more fund raising initiatives going forward. On the night, twelve couples danced. Between celebrities volunteers and survivors we made a splash! The atmosphere at Dublin's convention centre was electric and the mood back stage was just wonderful. I feel honoured to have met so many lovely people. None of us know one another before hand and the camaraderie and good will was simply fantastic. I'm not sure if Damian and I got third place as a sympathy vote - him with the broken thumb and me with the cancer... Either way we were over the moon!
I've been busy with Christmas shopping and all the usual build up to the big day, but now that the treatment is over I feel as if I can finally exhale. I cannot thank the doctors and nurses at St Vincent's private hospital enough. Together with Prof John Armstrong I have been minded cared for and treated so well. I said it before and I'll never tire of shouting it from the rooftops - the medics who spend their lives helping and saving others are angels on earth. I cannot comprehend how they do the work they carry out. I know I couldn't do it. I am so grateful to each and every one of them for being so patient and kind. It makes such a difference when the people I meet are smiling friendly and above all, so good at what they do. Professor Armstrong and his team have given me the most incredible Christmas present - life.
I know times can be tough for us all, but please, please, gather the people you love around you this Christmas. Nothing else really matters after that. Wishing you all a happy healthy and wonderful Christmas. I hope 2014 brings us all a wave of positivity. Where ever you are I send you love and light. Chat to you again soon!