Friday’s Child - Sharon Arbuckle

Sharon Arbuckle as a young girl.
Sharon Arbuckle as a young girl.

This week’s Friday’s Child is Sharon Arbuckle, who is the Local Fundraising Manager for Cancer Research UK. She is married to Colum and they have a daughter, Gracie, who’s 3.

How would you describe yourself?

This week's Friday's Child Sharon Arbuckle.

This week's Friday's Child Sharon Arbuckle.

Straightforward, short tempered, a fan of the big picture.

Happiest childhood memory?

My Dad making toffee apples for the whole street every Halloween night, he had a tiny thin metal saucepan and he would melt sugar in it over a gas camp stove, it looked incredibly dangerous. People would queue up at our front door in Fairman Place. I wanted to charge for the toffee apples but he wouldn’t let me.

What was your first job?

Austins Department store, selling tights.

Favourite book?

The Art of Happiness, His Holiness The Dalai Lama. Eastern wisdom meets western neurosis.

Favourite film?

As Good As It Gets. Jack Nicholson has so many great one liners but my all time favourite is ‘sell crazy somewhere else, we’re all stocked up here.’

Favourite television programme?

I love cookery programmes but they are not helping on my Weight Watchers journey...

Favourite expression?

‘You never know where a blister might rise.’ It’s meant to be a positive affirmation but it’s not always taken that way.

Favourite method of relaxation?

The nightly foot rub from himself.

Favourite holiday destination?

We got married in Italy and so it holds a special place in my heart. We went back last year with our daughter Gracie, she loved it too and we now pronounce it ‘Itawee’.

Who would you most like to meet?

Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook. Her book ‘Lean In’ has resonated very deeply with me about how women think, take on guilt and hold themselves back in the workplace.

What makes you angry?

Bluffers, I can’t stand fakes.

What makes you happy?

Waking up to the words, ‘Good morning mummy, you be Aladdin and I’ll be Jasmine.’

What human quality do you most admire?

Kindness, the simplest of traits, my Dad was the kindest person I ever met.

What human quality do you least admire?

Insincerity, why waste your time?

What has been the most embarrassing thing to happen to you?

Oh there have been so many it’s hard to choose. The most recent was choking on a traybake at a recent meeting with new colleagues, gasping for air, turning purple and coughing your guts up, not the smoothest of moves.

What was the worst thing to happen to you in your life?

My mother died of lung cancer when I was 16, it changed me forever. From that moment I knew that bad things didn’t just happen to other people.

What is your greatest fear?

Not being there for my daughter. Being a mother brings a whole new bag of fears. We are older parents and so it’s on our minds daily.

What has been the high point of your life to date?

At 41, finding out that I was pregnant with my beautiful Gracie.

How would you like to be remembered?

As a good friend, decent and true. Also, I make the best guacamole this side of the Atlantic.

What is your most treasured possession?

We have a painting given to us as a wedding present by our great friends Mary and Daithi Murphy. It shows a couple walking out of the darkness and into the light. It means a lot to us.

If you won the lotto what would you do with it?

After a generous contribution to Cancer Research UK which would save thousands of lives, I’d have a lot of fun. Ok, there would have to be the house in California and the Villa in the Amalfi coast and the ....

If you could be granted one wish in life, what would you ask for?

Just one? Ok, cancer, your time is up.

If you could write your own epitaph what would it be?

She gave you a laugh when you needed it.