Alexandra considered herself to be a healthy person.
She continued to play team sports well into her 20s and when she reached her 30s she became a regular walker, enjoyed jogging occasionally and after each child attended a boot camp to get back into shape.
As someone who loved fruit and vegetables, Alexandra also found it easy to eat well.
To the average person, Hollie Fielder is the picture of health. She runs her own personal training business and is passionate about helping others on their road to wellness.
But Hollie’s not your average Aussie fitness buff.
Life was great.
I was fit, active and looking forward to the Melbourne Cup long weekend.
To make things even better, I had just been promoted to my dream job as a primary school principal.
It was only after a few people at work mentioned I was looking a bit pale, even yellow, that I decided to drop into the health clinic.
I thought that with two young kids, all my dignity had already been lost and nothing much could gross me out.
Yet it was one good, long episode of rectal bleeding that really made me face my squeamishness and uneasiness with discussing bodily functions.
The bleeding had stopped by the time I arrived at the hospital, when the doctors asked, “How much blood? A teaspoon? A tablespoon?”
I was diagnosed with Stage IV bowel cancer in 2015, at the age of 31.
At the time of my diagnosis the cancer had already spread extensively to my liver and lungs.
At the time I was diagnosed I had recently returned to work as a Midwife and our little boy was 18 months old.