‘Cancer doesn’t wait for curves to flatten’: Cancer survivor nears ambitious fundraising goal in time for 50th birthday

MIDDLETON, Wis. – While much of the focus medically has shifted to COVID-19, a Middleton cancer survivor is determined to keep cancer research moving ahead.

Helping others is in former school teacher Kristie Konsoer’s nature. The seed of the idea for her Nifty Fifty fundraiser came from another woman with metastatic breast cancer.

“Her name was Alicia Neubauer,” Konsoer said. “She wanted to raise 40,000 for her 40th birthday.”

As News 3 Now reported last October, Konsoer launched her own fundraiser to raise $50,000 by her 50th birthday on May 30 of this year. The proceeds will go to Stage Four breast cancer research at the UW Carbone Cancer Center.

“It’s been a busy fall and winter,” Konsoer said, full of fundraising events including hot yoga. “It’s gone really well for me.”

Dragonfly Metastatic Breast Cancer FlowThen COVID-19 and quarantine came, taking away two months of planned fundraising.

“Everyone has had to give up things they’ve been counting on,” Konsoer said.

But she was counting on herself.

“Cancer doesn’t wait for curves to flatten. It doesn’t wait for quarantines to end,” Konsoer said. “The research needs to keep going.”

Konsoer also learned that Neubauer, the woman who gave her the idea for the fundraiser in the first place, died this spring.

“It just makes my resolve much stronger to try to keep raising that money,” Konsoer said

Instead of getting lost in what she can’t do, she’s paying attention to what she can do from home.

“I came up with ‘K cards’ I call them, nature cards, because that could still be done without having contact,” Konsoer said. She makes the cards using photos she takes herself.

'Raindrops On Roses' by Kristie Konsoer

‘Raindrops On Roses’ by Kristie Konsoer

Kristie’s efforts are blooming before her eyes. She’s now $5,000 away from her $50,000 goal.

“I’m going to be incredibly joyful and grateful and amazed and proud of myself for having accomplished what I set out to do,” she said.

Konsoer knows even being isolated at home, she didn’t do this alone, grateful to all the donors who have contributed so far.

“They have my heartfelt thanks and I’m grateful they believed in me,” she said.

Konsoer was originally planning to run in a 5K Race for Research scheduled on her birthday, but that’s been postponed until next year. She still hopes to run a 5K route through her neighborhood on Saturday.

Those interested in donating can find her fundraising page here.