Life after cancer: Shoreline resident adventures in Patagonia

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Andrea Macpherson at Rattlesnake Ridge


Andrea Macpherson of Shoreline is headed to Patagonia in South America next month for her third adventure therapy with First Descents. First Descents is a free outdoor program for young adults (18-39) with cancer. First Descents helps empower cancer fighters to achieve greatness beyond their diagnosis, defy their cancer, reclaim their lives and connect with others doing the same. 

In Andrea's words:
I work as a Community Relations Specialist for PCC Natural Markets. I was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma at age 20. I was in my junior year of college at the University of Washington. I left school and moved home to my parents' house in order to undergo chemotherapy and radiation treatment.
I am now almost seven years out of treatment and cancer-free. FD gave me the groundwork to take care of myself physically. It was daunting at first to even get off the couch, let alone whitewater kayak. I've attended kayaking camps in Montana and Wisconsin, and rock climbing camps in Estes Park. I'm now representing FD as an AmBADASSador in the Seattle area.
I have learned more about myself – my physical and mental strengths, my ability to conquer and control fear, and my will to overcome any obstacle put in front of me – in those weeks that I have spent at First Descents camps.

In Patagonia, she will fly into Bariloche and start her adventures with a float on the Futaleufu River into Chile. She will be rafting, sea kayaking, inflatable kayaking, mountain biking and horseback riding in some of the most spectacular scenery in the world.


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