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Banana Chat – meet Natalie Crawford

This week’s Banana Chat is with inspirational mum and athlete Natalie Crawford. Read on to find out some more about her ….

I am Natalie Crawford and am 35 years old. Ask my children what mummy’s job is and they will tell you I am a runner. Not just any type of runner though. A marathon runner who has Cystic Fibrosis, with the dream of inspiring others through sharing my journey. But most importantly showing Preston(6), who also has Cystic Fibrosis, and Skye(9), who is a carrier, that we can achieve anything we set our minds to.

What is your favourite joke ?
It would have to be my little boys best banana joke. “What sort of shoes are made out of banana skins?”
Slippers!

What makes you smile?
My children. Everyday. I smile as I see the compassion my daughter, Skye, has for the world in which she lives in, and her passion for animal conservation. A little girl so set on her dreams and mature beyond her years. Skye who is 9, she is so grown up beyond her years. Her compassion for the world, especially animals, makes me smile every day. Then there is my little Preston who is 6. My bouncing ball of sunshine who has the most incredible sense of humour. Every day I smile as my son, Preston, grows into his huge fun loving, humorous personality, he is my bouncing ball of sunshine who brightens my every day.

What is your favourite good news story?
I am part of a support group for women with cystic fibrosis who are on a journey to motherhood. One of the happiest moments is always, after seeing the journey, whether it be natural, IVF, fostering or adoption,  seeing the many miracles and happy endings, then watching their families grow! It is a reminder to us all to never give up hope.

What inspires you?
So much of this world inspires my mind. The innocence of my children inspires me, the way their eyes see the world. I am inspired by beautiful qualities in others, selfless acts, inner beauty, courage and originality. The everyday, real heroes, those with a vision, ambition and those battling obstacles to reach a dream. I am always inspired by nature, and how it teaches us that change and growth is beautiful, inevitable. Inspiration is everywhere, we just have to open our eyes.

If you could change one thing in the world what would it be?
For an endless pot of funds to be made available for the NHS. This would then provide life saving drugs such as Orkambi (want find out more about Orkambi? Click here) to my cystic fibrosis community, and fund research further into a cure for CF, which would save so much suffering and heartache.

If you could have one superpower what would you choose and why?
I would have a laser that would wipe out all germs, bugs and illness so we would never become poorly!

What is your favourite food?
This is a tricky one, as for me, and others with cystic fibrosis, food is a big part in our life. In order to stay nourished and well we consume many more calories than others! It would have to be a very easily prepared Tzatziki with warm crusty bread followed by a cadburys easter egg!

What is your favourite drink?
A strong, hot cup of tea in a dainty china cup.

If you are going on holiday what luxury item would you take from home?
My red nail varnish. I would feel totally naked without it. I have never understood how women can fill a whole bag full of makeup. For me, all I need is my nail varnish to feel pretty!

If you could make one law, what would it be and why?
There are a vast amount of changes I would love to see in today’s society. I’d have to choose a law which would make a difference to so many like myself, which would be to scrap the charges on both hospital parking and prescriptions, making them free to those with lifelong conditions.

Give us a random piece of information about you that people wouldn’t know?
Everything scares me! I have to push hard to get through everyday anxiety, but the mind is our most powerful weapon, and thankfully I have a very strong mind!

What is your favourite phrase or saying?
Those who do not believe in magic will never find it. By my favourite childhood author, Roald Dahl.

What cause, project or event would you like to promote?
I would like to raise awareness and promote the outstanding work that the Cystic Fibrosis Trust do, in helping families like myself and my children. The Cystic Fibrosis Trust not only support those affected by CF, but fund research into new drugs to improve the quality of life for so many. I have spent many years fundraising for The Cystic Fibrosis Trust, through running, most recently fundraising for a physiotherapy vest, not available on the NHS, for myself and Preston.

My page can be found here www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/nataliecrawford1982

Who is your favourite music artist?
One Direction are most definitely my guilty pleasure, but  the artist which has been the soundtrack to my recent journey is The Script. The Script carried me through my long runs marathon training as I could relate so much to the lyrics in so many of their songs. I think that is when you realise how powerful music is. “Written in the scars” by The Script was the song that carried me through my marathon, it hit home, and I felt it was written for my story.

Who is the person that you feel has shaped your life most?
My two children have shaped my life more than anyone ever could. They are the reason I make my health a priority and push the boundaries to stay so well, I strive to be such a positive role model for them, and in doing so I have watched them grow into such beautiful little people, who have been my biggest supporters in every race and challenge I have achieved.

Aside from my children, my coach, Aaron, has shaped me more than anyone. He gave me the tools of self belief to achieve my dream of running a marathon. The journey was isolating, a journey that few could understand. Aaron was there every step of the way, building my strength mentally and physically. I will always be thankful for him as he helped me to become the CF athlete which would inspire so many others. We all have a dream, Aaron helped me achieve mine.

PJ’s or Not?

Hot or cold? Hot

Cat or dog? Dog

Blue or pink? Red…haha i’m not a pink girl so i’d have to pick blue

Tea or coffee? Tea

Glass half-empty or glass half-full? Always half full

Pyjamas or not? Not

Night out or night in? Night in

Pizza or pasta? A huge pizza with a side of pasta

Biscuits or cake? As above!! cake

Wine or beer? Wine…just a sip though!

Football or rugby? Football (loyalty to my football crazy son!)

Cinema or theatre? Theatre

Gym or TV? Always gym

Naughty or nice? There’s a place for them both, but its nice to be nice.

Silver or gold? Gold

Tent or hotel? Hotel

Bath or shower? Bath

Starter or pudding? Pudding

Sheets or duvet? Duvet

Love Island or Game of Thrones? Not a fan of Love Island so i’ll say Game of Thrones as it’s on my “watch list”

Finally, apple or banana? Banana…in my smoothie!

 

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