Stynes inspired by kids in cancer fight - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Stynes inspired by kids in cancer fight

By Sam Lienert 29/10/2009 07:42:58 PM Comments (0)

Cancer-stricken Melbourne president Jim Stynes says he draws inspiration from children winning their fight against the disease as he continues his own battle.

Stynes visited a playgroup at not-for-profit child cancer support organisation Challenge in Melbourne on Thursday, playing and chatting with patients and their parents.

The Irish-born 1991 Brownlow Medallist said he had visited child cancer sufferers during his playing days, but this time was different.

"I've been down to the wards before and hung out with kids and it's part of being a player, a footballer, you get that opportunity and it's very humbling," Stynes said.

"I always encourage our players to go down there because it just reminds them of how gifted their life is ... it just is a reality check.

"For me now I suppose I have a deeper connection to what's going on."

Stynes, who has shaved himself bald after losing hair through radiation treatment, said it had given him an instant link to children undergoing a similar experience.

"The other day I was with a good friend and their son has just had surgery for brain tumours again," he said.

"When I walked in the door, he was just sitting there and he looked at me and he said `You're like me'".

He said the benefits flowed both ways, with stories of children whose cancer is in remission particularly heartening.

"It just gives you confidence, gives you hope that you can be one of those ones that can," he said.

Stynes said in addition to mainstream medicine and natural therapy, he believed in the healing effect of positive emotional and spiritual energy.

He was focused on having fun and remaining positive.

Stynes had several bouts of surgery in July to remove cancerous growths from his body and recently underwent radiation treatment to fight brain tumours that subsequently developed.

"For me it's secondary and that's where the (survival rate) numbers start to reduce and so on," he said.

"But I just try to make it normal, I don't want to be seen as now I'm in this group or that group."

He remained upbeat about his recovery chances.

"There's only two ways to go - you either believe you can or you believe you can't," he said.

"For me, I know the power of positive thinking."

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