Mandie hits the ski slopes

Mandie Stevenson and nephew Noah (11 months)
Mandie Stevenson and nephew Noah (11 months)

Andorra was an incredible trip, I travelled there to a place called Arinsal a few weeks ago with my boyfriend and friends Debbie, Barry and Jack. 
It was a full on ski trip with early rises and on the go all day. Needless to say I am thrilled to have finally managed a ski trip, it was the one bucket list I was worried I wasn’t going to complete.

It is gorgeous and a very friendly resort especially for beginners at skiing. The first day we eagerly jumped on the first cable car chair lift we could get our hands on and ended up on a mountain that felt higher than Ben Nevis.

Naively we didn’t panic as we reassured ourselves we would just hop back on the chair lift and back down to the bottom to find a baby slope.

We were all horrified to discover that it was strictly against the rules to return to the bottom on the chair lift with the only option to ski to the bottom. We did attempt it but eventually had to admit defeat and take the skip equipment off and walk to the bottom.

Aside from the vertical drops at sections of the mountain and the three and a half hour trek down we did make it to the bottom injury free.

It was a lesson to be learned, not to jump head first. However, once we gained our confidence and had plenty practice on smaller mountains we did on our last day brave the gigantic mountain again and enjoyed it.

The tranquillity and the feeling of stillness at points on the ski slopes with the sun beating down is very surreal.

But still time for plenty laughs with great friends and stories we will reminisce about for years to come – a perfect trip all round.

I am happy to have again been given another stable scan result with a repeat in three to four months. My oncologist Sam mentioned he thought my current treatment would only have worked for around five months and it has now been thirteen months that I have remained stable with no additional cancer tumours.

Understandably I am extremely anxious at every check up, however, it finally feels like the hormone therapy I am now receiving is allowing me to cling on to normality.

Since being diagnosed in 2015 with secondary breast cancer in the initial first couple of years it felt like every scan was a disappointment and I had to keep moving onto other treatments. From 2018 onwards it seems to have changed for me. I am mindful that it won’t last forever but I am certainly enjoying myself nevertheless.

I thoroughly enjoyed looking after my little nephew Noah for a couple of hours through the week and having him all to myself. I felt privileged to be asked and jumped at the chance.

It was my first time and hopefully not the last. Since Noah was born eleven months ago I have loved watching him grow and discover his mischievous and infectious personality. He is intrigued by everything and does not miss a trick. I am super excited about celebrating his first birthday next month, but I keep asking myself where the time has gone, it doesn’t feel so long since I was first cradling him in my arms.

In true Mandie style I am beginning the month of March as I mean to go on with a short trip to Berlin next weekend. With Europe being on our doorstep I am on a mission to explore as much of it as I can over the coming few months and tick of the cities I have never been to.