Woodvale cancer survivor credits swimming and social life

Woodvale cancer survivor credits swimming and social life

A WOODVALE resident says swimming has helped her overcome breast cancer.

Surrounded by family and good friends, Lee-ann Dart (45) believes her focus on the three Cs – chlorine, coffee, chats – helped her to get over the ‘big C’ – stage three breast cancer.

The regular swimmer decided to take on the challenge of the 3.6km open water swim around the Busselton Jetty in 2011.

Along with her 16 friends, Dart used the event as a goal to train towards, with the white line of the pool and a social coffee and chat after giving her the incentive to keep going.

Lee-ann Dart .

In 2016, she was diagnosed with breast cancer but retained her positive attitude to tackle the disease and rise above it with the support from her swimmer friends and family.

Next year Dart and her team mates will tackle her ninth Busselton Jetty Swim, having never missed a year since 2011.

“I think getting around the jetty every year is an achievement,” she said.

“Especially when the conditions have been particularly ‘challenging’.

“But for me, 2016 was particularly special as I had just started chemo for stage three breast cancer.

“I didn’t want to miss it but I would have been too sick to swim, so I skipped chemo and swam the first leg in a team with my beautiful friend Alison.

“My oncologist was not impressed -you don’t skip chemo – but I love this weekend and would not have missed it for anything.

“I could only manage the first leg as it was particularly rough that year but I was so happy to be there and

last year I was back to do the whole thing.

“The reason I love swimming is the coffee after; swimming is just an excuse to socialise.

“The Busselton Jetty Swim is a highlight as I like to enjoy it and often stop to look at the fish, chat to the water safety guys, dive down and touch the bottom, look at the people on the jetty.

“I don’t really care how long it takes me – normally one hour, 20 minutes.

“I put my head down and swam seriously, I would do much better but I want to soak up the experience.”

In 2019, the Busselton Jetty Swim will have 3100 swimmers participating in the inaugural 1 mile swim on February 10, which has been added to the 3.6km and kids swims.

Visit www.busseltonjettyswim.org.au