WordPress has just sent me a message telling me that this site is getting a lot of traffic right how. Hello and welcome! Please feel free to leave comments and to share anything you found useful with others. The whole purpose for keeping this blog was to help other women (or men) going through that long, dark tunnel that cancer offers us.
If you’re new here you may not know that I wrote a book about dealing with the fear of recurrence that is a common and perfectly normal consequence of recovering from cancer. I wrote it after a dear friend, who I met because of this blog, suggested it. Ricki was an amazing women who participated in as many experimental medical treatments as possible before her death, “Because I know I’m dying, Meg, but at least I can help other women before I go…”
When she got the news that there was nothing more doctors could do for her I made a trip down to Sydney to visit her. When I arrived, she was sitting up in bed, smiling and joking. I was gobsmacked! I told Ricki that I was all prepared for a weepy session and she said, “What your book taught me, Meg, is that every single day is precious. I’m alive today. I can still cherish my family for today, still be grateful for my life, still recognise how fortunate I have been compared to so many people in the world. You also taught me that I shouldn’t waste and of the precious time I have feeling sorry for my self!”
I wish I could say that the book will have this kind of impact on everyone that reads it (and what an amazing gift to the world that would be!) but I am certain that Ricki was just an exceptionally positive and giving person, and I am grateful for any part my book played in making the end of her life a little easier. Death is hard, even for joyful people and those that love them.
Ricki started following my blog soon after I started writing it, and her thoughtful and encouraging comments kept me writing when I might have given up. In a private exchange I once told her that I was feeling a bit swamped by all of the women that were contacting me to ask about dealing with that slow and creeping fear that the cancer would return. I had what I thought was good advice, but it was becoming increasingly demanding to repeat myself. “You should write a book!” she replied. So I did. Here’s the link:
When I was choosing a title, I wondered how people like Ricki would feel. She knew by the time I had finished the book that her cancer was metastatic and considered incurable. “I like it. You’re living well after your cancer diagnosis and I’m living well after my cancer diagnosis. I don’t think you’ve excluded anyone.”
All profits I make from the book go back into charities that fund cancer research or support people with cancer.