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My Story

Hi! I'm Jill. I'm a mother of 3 kids, a widow, living with Osteosarcoma, an above knee amputee with a prosthetic leg, a teacher, a golfer and happy to be alive. 

In June of 2014, our world was turned upside down. Both my husband Jeff and I were diagnosed with advanced cancers just days apart. Jeff was diagnosed with terminal Colon Cancer and I was diagnosed with stage 4 High Grade Fibroblastic Osteosarcoma. 

Sadly after 18 months, Jeff passed away. I was at the end of my treatment options in Canada, so I took a shot in the dark on a Clinical Trial in the United States. I travelled to Ann Arbour Michigan every 3 weeks for 9 months to receive the trial drug Keytruda. Although I had to have my leg amputated in February of 2016, the trial drug MIRACULOUSLY erradicated most of my lung tumors. After a few lung surgeries, rehabilitation, and working through my physical and emotional trauma, I was determined to stay alive in order to raise my children by myself in Nova Scotia. I am not cured of cancer, but I'm stable.

My life experiences have taught me how to: find strength in the face of adversity, build resilience through challenges, focus on the positive and things I can control, see challenges as opportunities to learn and grow, learn how to advocate for myself and be flexible to make it easier to handle unexpected challenges.  

Speaking Topics

As a motivational speaker, I bring a powerful and inspiring presence to every stage. I am deeply passionate about sharing my experiences to empower others to overcome their own challenges. My unique perspective and positivity make me an invaluable speaker for any event aiming to motivate and uplift its attendees. 

Surviving to Thriving: Harnessing Resilience in the Face of Life's Greatest Challenges

Living Life to the Fullest: Embracing Unpredictability and Finding Joy in Every Moment

The Power of Positivity: Overcoming Adversity with Grace and Determination

Are you looking for a motivational speaker?

I am now accepting speaking engagements.

Get in Touch!


Jill MacDonald

Halifax, NS

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