fbpx Winning in More Ways Than One | Danila Dilba
A collage of four photos: Tiana McCoy stands with NTFL Women's Division 2 Premiership Team, her cousin Amanda Campbell stands with DDHS staff for a Deadly Choices photo, a screen grab of Tiana's Kwit App, and Tiana's footy team pose with the 2023/24 Women's Division 2 Premiership flag.
04 April 2024

Winning in More Ways Than One

In March 2024, DDHS Executive Manager Clinical Services, Tiana McCoy took home the 2023/24 TIO NTFL Women's Division Two Premiership with her team, the Palmerston Lady Rats. The Grand Final win was incredible, with the Lady Rats securing a 15-point win over the Jabiru Bombers, but for Tiana, it symbolised so much more. 

The 2023/24 NTFL season was Tiana’s first season as a player. Despite being ‘born into footy’, with a Hall of Fame father, siblings and kids who all played, she’d never committed to the game herself. She’d coached, supported and been asked to play multiple times, but her smoking addiction always held her back. 

In 2023, halfway through the season, Tiana finally signed up to play. Why? Because she’d quit smoking!

Tiana's Old Life as a Smoker 

For a long time, Tiana accepted that she'd die a smoker. She didn't enjoy it and knew it was bad for her, but she couldn't shake the habit–she thought that's just how it had to be.  

Her partner quit five years before her and her kids often asked her to quit, but it wasn’t until the sudden passing of her cousin that it finally clicked.  

“In November 2021, I experienced the unexpected and sudden passing of my older cousin, [past Danila Dilba AHP, Amanda Campbell],” Tiana shared.

“This was someone I looked up to. After working at Danila Dilba, [Amanda] studied Nutrition then moved to Perth and became a midwife. She quit smoking with the support of her two young boys and moved on to live an active and healthy life.” 

Amanda was just 45 when she died, and it made Tiana realise that there’s so much in life that’s uncertain. It was time to take control of her life and do the things that she wanted to do while she had the chance.  

The Road to Quitting 

Tiana had her last smoke during a family holiday to Airlie Beach in 2022. 

“In Queensland, smoking was pretty antisocial. It was socially awkward for me to do it there and I felt really displaced. I smoked my last smoke in Airlie Beach and made the mental decision to see how long I could last without buying another pack.” 

Tiana took it as a challenge against herself and used the Kwit app to track her successes. As the number of days without a smoke on the app went up, she had a great feeling of success, but it wasn’t all a walk in the park.  

“Quitting was hard, especially the first three days,” Tiana reflected, sharing how the nicotine withdrawals, agitated feelings, and fatigue affected her. “But I knew it was just my body learning to live without the drug.” 

The next hurdle was three weeks, then three months–all of which seemed like a lifetime, but looking back wasn’t that long at all.  

When she hit the one-year mark, Tiana knew she’d done it and no longer felt tempted to take a step back.  

“I thought I was the weakest willed person, and didn’t see [quitting] ever being possible, but I did it!”  

Sweet Victory 

The Lady Rats’ Premiership win came just after Tiana celebrated one year smoke free. At the time of writing, she'd stacked up 1 year, 4 months and 20 days without a cigarette and still checks into the Kwit app just to see how that number is tracking.  

Giving up the puff has given Tiana renewed health, energy, time and money, all of which she used over the Easter break to put into her brand-new family boat (one she says she wouldn’t have had the time or financial freedom to get if she was still smoking). 

Her biggest regret, when it comes to smoking and playing footy, is that she didn’t do it sooner.  

“You don’t have to accept that you’re a smoker–there are different ways to quit, and my way might not work for you, but when you decide to do it for the right reason - for yourself - you’ll be able to do it.”  

Congratulations Tiana, on both wins! We can’t wait to hear all about your future successes on the footy field next season!

Want to learn more about our deadly Danila Dilba staff members? 

Read More Stories here.