Saturday, January 29, 2005

"This is my last diary"

When BBC reporter Ivan Noble was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor, he started an online diary. Today he posts that he is too ill to continue.
When I began writing about having a brain tumour, I did not really know why.

That personal style of journalism was never something I was particularly attracted to or interested in reading myself.

But when I was diagnosed back in 2002 I had a strong urge to fight back against what felt like the powerlessness of the situation.

I really wanted to try to make something good out of bad.

I was not sure if what I wrote would be any good and I was not sure if anyone would read it but I wanted to try.

And I also very much wanted to use the diary to maintain my link with my job if I was not well enough to work.

Optimism in dark circumstances

I know now that people have found the diary useful, and it meant a lot to me in particular to know that there were people in a similar situation to me or caring for such people who got something out of it.

The regular feedback from dozens and dozens of people every time I have written has been wonderful, especially in real times of crisis.

I know that it has kept me going much longer than I would have without it and I am grateful...

What I wanted to do with this column was try to prove that it was possible to survive and beat cancer and not to be crushed by it.

Even though I have to take my leave now, I feel like I managed it.

I have not been defeated.

Thank you once again to everyone who helped me and came with me...

I will end with a plea. I still have no idea why I ended up with a cancer, but plenty of other cancer patients know what made them ill.

If two or three people stop smoking as a result of anything I have ever written then the one of them who would have got cancer will live and all my scribblings will have been worthwhile. (emphasis added)
Update: Ovarian cancer survivor Michelle Dellino is now posting at the Cancer Blog. She discusses fear of recurrence, and what to ask upon receiving a cancer diagnosis.
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