PUBLISHED ON: 29 July 2019

After years volunteering at The Show London, Jazz will be modelling on the catwalk to commemorate her 10 year cancerversary. 

I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2009, in the summer holidays. I noticed that my nipple looked like it was dragging sideways. I checked and felt a large lump beneath it.

Within one week I had received my diagnosis. I thought cancer meant death. My thoughts turned to my children and how they would cope without me. 

I had a mastectomy and immediate reconstruction, followed by eight cycles of chemotherapy and five weeks of radiotherapy. I took Tamoxifen for two years until I had a oophorectomy.

The treatment caused so many changes, physically and mentally. My hair fell out after the first cycle of chemotherapy. I thought I was fine with it, and got annoyed when my family told me to put a wig or turban on. It wasn't until I walked past the mirror one day and saw my reflection that I realised exactly why my family didn't like it. I asked my husband to shave the last remaining strands of hair.

I have a scar that runs from hip to hip, as well as scars on my breast and underarm. I also initially had no nipple after my reconstruction. I found it very hard to look at my body, and was pleased when I finally got the nipple tattooed.

I returned to work 10 months after my diagnosis and within a year found that I was struggling to come to terms with the 'new normal' I had been left with. I could no longer multi-task, I had a terrible memory and the fear of the cancer returning had become all consuming. It never really goes away - the voice is always there, it just gets a little bit quieter.

I first reached out to Breast Cancer Care through their Helpline. They reassured me that the way I was feeling was okay. After that, I became a Breast Cancer Voice and became involved in various things, including volunteering at The Show London for a few years. I decided that I would wait until my 10 year cancerversary (and 50th birthday!) to apply.

I love The Show. The models have always astounded me - I know that breast cancer treatment is very physically gruelling so for me their catwalk represents hope and strength.

Even now, 10 years on, there are times when my body makes me feel like an old lady and my confidence nosedives. I hope that when I'm modelling I will feel like I'm winning, and give people watching the strength they need to get through the tough times.

Join Jazz at The Show London as 31 inspirational models step out in style on the catwalk after a breast cancer diagnosis. Book your ticket today.

The Show London