So few women see themselves as inspirational. At Lumi, we want to show the world that all women are inspirational and have an inspiring story – even and especially those women that we don’t see on the cover of magazines or the TV.
Kendall – wow, she’s inspiring. Humble, strong, resilient, never a victim – she’s got a handle on it. Read it for yourself below!
Tell us a bit about yourself
I am 27 years old, married to my husband Brett for 4 years. I work as a Nurse at a day surgery. I regularly attend church hanging out with the teenagers at the youth group there as a leader and attempt to play sport and exercise when I can.
Tell us about how you got to where you are today. Do you see yourself as an inspirational woman? Why/Why not?
I definitely don’t see myself as inspirational, because I have this vision and idea of what inspirational people do and I don’t feel that I quite match up to how amazing those people seem to be. But I know people would say otherwise after hearing my story. However, I don’t think mine is anything special because I feel so often like a weakling, needing strength from everything else to get me through. Inspirational people always seem so steadfast and confident.
Describe your most important values and those things that are most important to you. Why are these so important?
I value God the most. The relationship I have with God is most important to me and who I am, and that is who I find my identity and my value in. Having this relationship is the biggest strength-giver in getting through the good stuff and the bad stuff. It gives me direction and a purpose in life.
What in your life are you most proud of? What do you see as your biggest achievements?
At the moment I feel that I am most proud of where I am now. Being fitter than I ever have been since beating cancer (which of course I am proud of that too) but also doing things like completing a triathlon make me feel proud. Simple things like that make me feel like I have worked really hard for something – even after being thrown a curve ball in life, I am still winning!
What in your life can’t you live without?
Coffee. The liquid gold really perks me up in the morning, cures a headache and reminds me of special moments in my life – just from the smell! But yes, I drink it.
What struggles have you had to face and what struggles may still lie ahead of you? What is the biggest struggle you’ve faced that has shaped who you are today?
The biggest struggle I have faced was being diagnosed with cancer when I was 24. The lymphoma tumour I had grew around part of my heart. I endured 8 cycles of chemotherapy, 5 days long, every 3 weeks for 6 months. I lost my hair and what felt like my old self. My body changed in dramatic ways and I have residual effects of the cancer in my body now. The tumour is gone, but the part of my heart that it grew around now doesn’t work and my body has to compensate to operate as normal. Thankfully it does this well but I do face future challenges with unknown fertility, whether my body will respond well to even carrying a baby and of course the unrelenting fear that the cancer will return.
This period in my life has definitely shaped me to the person I am today in so many ways. I have a lot of thankfulness for being healed and the fact I am alive today, but unfortunately the trauma of going through the battle has scarred me in a way that I actually struggle to talk about. I still feel that no one can completely understand the fears that I feel and no matter how much I talk about them, they’re still there and they’re as real as ever.
What have you learned from these experiences?
To trust in God above anything else. To lean on those who want to support you and uphold you. To admit that you can’t do things alone and to be honest with those who love you and genuinely care for you.
They ask how you are, so you tell them how you are. It’s still hard, but I am reminded of this daily! I have learned that I am pretty strong and resilient. But that it is ok to show weakness.
What you hope to achieve in the next 5-10 years?
I hope to achieve a few things in the next 5 years. Buy a house with Brett, get a dog, start a family and really put family stuff at the top of priority list. To become selfless!
Tell us about the joy that is in your life right now – what is happiness to you?
I reflected on this just the other day. I really enjoy the people in my life at the moment. So many intentional people in there who care and want to do life with me. They bring me joy just because they’re quirky in their different ways and all bring something different to our relationship.