Well, I had recently gone right off Barbara Ellen but I am looking at her with renewed respect after reading this item. A great piece.
I read it and found it interesting , there was also a little bit in the Times yesterday saying that she was dealing with it in her usual no nonsense way with I thought was quite an antidote to "celebrity culture" I also wish her well I love her on Just a Minute, long may she continue
Should also add, I was working in London at the time of Diana's death and I found the whole outpouring of grief hysterical and absolutely ridiculous - it was like people had turned into complete basket cases over a very flawed woman none of us personally knew. I remember at work, we were all glad the week after the funeral because during the previous week it was like none of us was allowed to say we couldn't actually stand Diana and didn't really care that she had died in a car crash.
I have to say, I feel the whole Jade Goody media circus is very offensive and I am sick of seeing headlines about it. I do feel sorry for her though - I had a scare with cervical cancer at the same age, thankfully I was clear, but I remember the fear I experienced at the time. I had only got married the year before and my OH was terrified. I think that's why we coped so well with the whole BC issue.
I still feel that celebrities do have a choice in whether the public know about their illness. If Jade did the interviews with OK! etc as a form of therapy or simply to get a bit of money to help her through, then fine and good and I have no doubt that Jade has inadvertantley raised awareness amongst women, especially younger women, about cervical cancer. But equally, she had a choice whether or not to do this, just as Belinda (and I also like your style) wants peace and dignity as I do I when my time comes.
Paul Newman's death was an enormously big deal in the US which drew a huge outpouring of grief.
I'm not sure which annoys me more ..... this country's obsession with "slebs" - or Wapping hacks telling us how "Britain" feels, or worse, should feel.
In the words of Morrissey "It says nothing to me about my life."
Belinda - I like your style.
I've printed the article below..thanks Jane..might have missed it..I've already asked friends who use the secondaries forums here not to post my death on the world wide web, I just want to 'slip away' very, very quietly .....x
The debt all women owe to Jade and Wendy.
Barbara Ellen The Observer, Sunday October 12 2008
It seems that I, along with all the females in the country, should be thanking Jade Goody. But first maybe the British public should ask themselves - how real is our interest in her plight? Or is this just more 'grief porn' for the masses?
Not so long ago, Goody was the ultimate Celebrity Untouchable, only useful to be occasionally ridiculed in photo spreads about bad shoes or sweat patches, or apologise yet again for bullying Bollywood actress Shilpa Shetty in the Big Brother house. A year or so on, Goody was still all but excommunicated from the world of celebrity; the standard reaction to her name would be a mewl of disgust.
Odd then, even rather distasteful, that since the announcement of her aggressive cervical cancer, we suddenly can't get enough of her. Even odder, perhaps, that some appear to be blaming Goody for this.
What does it say about British society that we have such a powerful mawkish streak? Nor does it take the death of an uber-icon such as Princess Diana to inspire it. Never mind the Queen of Hearts - this runs all the way through the celebrity alphabet from A list through to Z. Moreover, say what you like about the 'over-sentimental' Americans, but even they are more temperate in such matters.
When Paul Newman died, there was certainly interest and grief in the US, but there wasn't the kind of eye-dabbing, nose-blowing weepathon of the kind you'd expect over here. It has long struck me that not only are the British ambulance chasers, but that we're not averse to waiting patiently at the depot for the ambulance to leave. At the risk of being facetious, there is almost an element of: 'Ooh, someone's really poorly; let's make a day of it.'
Indeed, one wonders how former EastEnders Wendy Richards must be feeling about the media coverage of the return and spread of her cancer? Richards reacted in a no-nonsense manner by saying she was furious about its return and bringing forward her wedding to last Friday. One hopes the event was not marred by the grisly sense of media countdown that now dogs 'Battling' Wendy's every move.
It has been suggested to me that celebrities such as Goody and Richards can often seem more real than the real people around you and this goes some way to explaining the exaggerated public reaction to their health problems. However, it also shames those who criticised Goody for going too public with her plight, to the point of giving paid interviews to publications such as OK! magazine.
Are we seeing here the flipside to the British appetite for grief-porn? As in: it's all very well for the public to circle like vultures, and for the media to use it to shift product, but somehow dÃ©classÃ© for Goody to be proactive? Its almost as if she should eschew such tacky behaviour and instead lie in state, awaiting her fate, like some 'Bermondsey Evita', all the more worshipped because she is quiet and still. Phooey to that, Goody evidently thought, and we should be grateful she did.
The squeamish (and, yes, I do mean men) should maybe look away now for I must speak of 'down there'. Which brings me to why females should be thankful to Jade. How many of us sheepishly made a long overdue appointment for a smear test when we heard about what had happened to Goody? I did, scuttling to the GP the first chance I got. By the same token, how many people immediately stopped umming and aahing about the new cervical cancer vaccination for young girls and realised it was a great idea?
This is what Jade has achieved with her horrible health luck, 'too public stance' and supposedly tacky OK! interviews - a heightened awareness of cervical cancer that has probably been more powerful than a 100 NHS campaigns combined. Similarly, Richards has underlined the need for vigilance even after you've got the all-clear.
Indeed, if we feel the need to criticise, we should maybe take a look at that element of ourselves that likes to gawp. Not that this necessarily means we should stop. In a roundabout way, the part of us that reacts to Jade's story is probably the same part that sends money to charity appeals.
In a nutshell, there is nothing bad, and plenty good, about the ability to feel empathy for a complete stranger - so long as we're aware that what is happening isn't an old soap plotline of Wendy's or a PR stunt of Jade's. So long as, just like what's happening to them, our sympathy is real.
There's a really interesting article in the Observer today by Barbara Ellen about Jade Goody and Wendy Richard and media and public responses to their cancer diagnoses. She engages with that very British culture of 'grief-porn' and the public circling like vultures. Yet her conclusions are quite optimistic...I'm not sure I would say the same but very thought provoking: 'In a nutshell there is nothing bad, and plenty good about the ability to feel emapthy for a complete stranger...so long as we are aware that what is happening isn't an old soap plotline...or a PR stunt. So long as, just like them, our sympathy is real.'
You as always put the finger of truth in everything you write, without any bu*****t, I love your writing and do so enjoy what you say, not that you are ill but you are not afraid to tell it like it is, keep up the good work and I personally trust everything you say, If i ever have the misfortune to have a recurrance you would be the first person i would want to contact.
Thanks so much
For interests sake and excuse if it has already been mentioned I have just read an old magazine and Wendy Richards original dx was in 1996 followed by a lumpectomy and radiotherapy.
Like everyone I wish her well and hope that there is treatment which gives her more years. Others on here seem to be proof that even with a secondary diagnosis there is still much treatment on offer.
Anne , I totally agree with you. I am also practising living for now and its helping me to cope with bc but its taken me a year to get to this stage. I do yoga , go to the gym and have started painting . I really can switch off for 2 hrs a week and focus on being creative) . Maybe its stopped me being ambitious I dont know , as I am not really thinking about the future at all but as you say you have to find your own way to live with it .
First, I would also like to send my best wishes to Wendy Richards and as Tashamum, says, to everyone else on here in a similar situation.
Anyway, re the positive thing...Tashasmum hit the nail on the head- being positive is about being yourself and acknowledging your feelings when they come. To laugh is to be positive, to cry is to be positive and to allow yourself to feel is to be positive. To be 'real' is to be positive. It's isn't all about grinning and chanting like a demeted idiot!! It's about living your life fully. Perhaps the press are aware of that?? But I admit, it is tough when well wishers tell you all the keep your chin up stuff, because at the end of the day, how can they start to imagine what my situation feelds like.
Jane, in my opinion, you're one of the most positive and strong people I've come across! You have your own battles and yet, you're out there battling to help us with ours too by helping us acknowledge and understand what is happening to us. Whether you realise it or not, you are trying to make a difference for all of us! I am trying to do the same in other ways for other cancer patients, but I don't want to go into detail here.
Life is full of c***. I have had friends and family die of things other than BC and somethings are equally distressing. I have known a few people throw it all away, by ending their own lives when they had so much to live for- how do we explain that? The world is a crazy but beautiful place, we don't know when that flippin bus that we all hear about is going to come round the corner or any of that stuff. But, as long as we are getting on with living the best way we can and in the way that we feel that is right for us as individuals, then we are living our lives positively.
I was given weeks/months initially, I've had all the chat from professionals but I was lucky with my therapy (so far....but don't worry, I know I'll run out of options and am fully aware of my mortality!). I've been told by psychologists that letting yourself laugh... and cry is being positive. For me, living in the moment and appreciating what we have now is the best way for me to cope- Yes, I know I'll die but do I have to keep thinking about it? No, that is for some time in the future and I'm not delving too much into that. I had to think about it very hard a year ago but personally, I'm choosing to have a break from that for the time being. Tai chi, yoga, meditation , yes, I'll sign up to any of that, because it ties me into NOW and gives me a break from the inevitable. And in my opinion, you are very right about one other thing Jane- having realistic hope.
It's a hard one all of this- there is no global right or wrong. It's about finding your own way and helping others consider new angles on their situation too.
Best wishes to you all, this is a good place to have these discussions.
You put your finger right on it, as usual, Jane.
I've come to realise that those who urge us to 'keep positive' do it because if you do (or appear to do) this it makes THEM feel better (subconscious thing?)
Some of the people who say this to me are old dear friends, who stuck by me through everything with not only words but with real, practical support - and I wouldn't dream of upsetting them by saying anything! Difficult, isn't it? I think it may have become virtually a cliche to many people - but not to us!
The 'think positive' mantra is not just about how an individual person feels on a daily basis. I think its a meaningless statement trotted out without thought by far too many people commenting on other peope's' illnesses. What is annoying is when other people...everyone from the press, through people without cancer, to people with cancer say it not only of themselves but to try to dump the sentiment on those with illness who don't want t know thanks.
I often wonder exacttly what it is we are supposed to be 'thinking positive' about.
To tell someone else to think positive is often a way of distancing from their pain and their reality..telling someone else to 'think positive' is a very effective way of closing down converstaion, discussion and relationship. It makes for an easy way of artificially transforming people with a 'brave positive fighting attitude' into mythical heroes. The rest of us more human are then rendered invisible...and if we die...well my goodness we must have had the wrong attitude (but then you can't win because the positive thinkers die too in which case they are specially special and valiant.)
Isn't it about time we stopped talking this nonsense about illness, particularly about cancer.
But don't get me wroing...have I ever advocated a 'negative attitude' No of course not. What I do advocate is a distinction between the meaningless trite mantra of 'thinking positive; and a more useful concept of having relaistic hope..at every stage of illness. I think each of us, depending on the facts of our cases has to balance hope, truth (th facts of our case) and uncertinaty. Hope isn't necessarily about cure or survival because for many that's simply not realistic.
Some perosnal examples...I had a crap primary diagnosis..wasn't in my imagination..it just was. (23 nodes triple negative, vascular invasion.) I knew I had a good chance of recurrence so I took a couple of important life decisions..to retire from full time work and move...with a different kind of truth (a good prognosis) I probbaly wouldn't have done. I then lived much longer than I expected to wthout recurrence and the decisions I had taken were just so right.I got part time work, enjoyed living out of London and my hope grrew that maybe I would be on the right side of the stats.
I wasn't..I got a recurrence, not immediately in distant organs as I had expected (based on facts but rgeionally...but also incurable.) I've had loads of chemotherapy the past 18 months..each time knowing that the drugs won't cure me(truth) but hoping they may reduce tumourrs, hoping for delay in further psread, knowing I could be dead in 6 months, or have longer (uncertainty.) New problems have arisen...my cancer has at times galloped regionally and now I can only speak in a hoarse whispering voice but I'm hoping an ENT specialist might help me today. I am not hoping for a cancer cure because thay is so unlikely to happpen. I am hoping that taxol will wok and put me in partial remission for some months...and so on and so on.
I think it is problematic on forums when we read things from people who have different approaches to truth, hope and uncertianty than oursleves. I know I find it painfully hard when Ir ead stuff which seems terribly unrealistic to me..women with very poor primary diagnoses who don't seem to realise, or people very clearly dying who are exhorting others to think positive. Sometimes perhaps I have been tactles...but then others lob pot shots at me...someone recently saying on a post that my attitude would be a 'self fulfillign prophecy'...great thanks. And my favourite a while back (and sorry to keep mentioning this but it is a classic) when someone popped into the Dew Drop Inn to call me the Fifth Horse of the Apocalypse. People get very heated all round.
I don't know whether i am lucky or foolhardy to have a practical approach to what is going to happen..yes I'm going to die of bc. but hopefully not yet, but if pear shpaed stuff happens it could be. I have terrible dark days though right now depsite being on taxol weekly and not being able to talk properly I'm pretty OK..live a pleasant enjoyable life with enough money, loving friends and partner (though so what if I said I was living constantly in a drak hole...that for some is the truth and no less commendable than all those brave souls smiling away to the end.)
I agree with your comments tashasmum. I was a little upset reading this thread earlier but having read other threads am good again..
luv Ang xx
I would also like to wish Wendy Richards well - as well as all the other forum users who are in similar situations...
With regard to the 'stay/be positive' debate, for what its worth i would just say to hell with that - 'be yourself' - be who you are and acknowledge your feelings when you experience them. There's nothing worse than feeling like cr*p and having some joker telling you to 'be positive', 'keep your chin up', 'keep smiling' etc etc - grrrrrrrrrr!!! However, theres also nothing wrong with being positive and cheerful (if thats how you feel) and people around you wondering why on earth you're not crumbling...... Feel how you need and want to feel because, at the end of the day, you're the only one who has to look yourself in the eye in the mirror...
Take care all
I have just undergone bilateral mastectomy and would like think positively, what good does it do to think negatively. I am well aware that it may come back, or that I might not live as long as maybe I thought I would, but everyone dies sometime. Negativity is not a good trait for anyone whatever the outcome. What will be will be, but please lets not live in terror of this awful disease. We may get frightened and hurt at times, but live life to the full and enjoy whatever you have whilst you have it. LIFE IS GOOD. Whatever the outcome, I am glad I have lived on Gods earth and had many experiences of life, what I hate to see is young children suffering and they seem to get on with it. I too have my down moments, doesn't everyone whether suffering cancer or not? All the very best to Wendy and hope her wedding is the best day of her life. Good luck to all and wish you all well however you may be suffering.
Thanks Nixxic, I really appreciate that - my sister had same crappy prognosis at 38 - huge amounts of lymph nodes affected and she's now 3 and a bit years on and NED, like you on herceptin.
Lizzie its not a case of if but when...some women never have a recurrance of cancer my husbands gran is proof of that, she had a mastectomy in the fifties and lived to be 91..so we can never say it "always" comes back.
I had a crappy prognosis at age 31 and I believe the docs thought I would be six feet down by now but I am currebtly NED 5 years on and hopefully the Herceptin and chemo will keep me that way....we could all theoretically be killed by something un cancer related the way the world is going right now who knows?
Not everyone will die from this, those with secondaries of course are more likely to die from thier disease but we all have to keep living till the time a fail safe cure comes along...I was talking to an American friend with cancer the other day and her oncologist has said the cure is literally no more than 2/3 years away...I dont know if that is true but lets hope and believe all this pink money is going towards finding better treatments to keep us her for a long time.
This is a fascinating thread - Sixpen's entry has worried me a lot - I am not stupid and know my sister is facing uncertainty for the rest of her life but she's never been told (as far as I'm aware) that it's not a case of if but when. I wont be telling her.
I can't help adding my twopenn'orth!
I must say I agree with what Jane said about being positive or not being positive. I think if you are like that then you help yourself get through the treatments and its better to be cheerful if you can but no one could have been more positive than Lisa , my daughter, who was so sure she was going to be one of the lucky ones being so young. She refused to even talk about dying and made the Drs laugh all the time as she joked about having a terminal cancer. When told the cancer would get her in the end she replied," How do you know it could be a number 22 bus" !
She died just 13 months after diagnosis as the cancer went to her brain and grew so rapidly. She was positive to the end which I believe helped because she didn't know she was going to die that day .. and neither did the Drs .. it meant it was a great shock to us all as she did have this positive, fighting attitude but the point is and what I think Jane was saying that it has nothing to do with stopping the cancer if it has other ideas.
Anyway please keep positive because I believe it helps some people cope and who knows you could pull through as many do.
Good luck to Wendy Richards too by the way .. and anyone with this damned awful disease.
Love Sue x
Firstly, Wendy if you are reading this, I hope all goes well for you.
It must be difficult being a celebrity. The high profile and press intrusion is the nature of the beast of being in the public eye. For most of the time, this is good for the celebrity as it keeps us aware of their existence and is publicity. The same goes for politicians and the Royal Family. Well and good all the press coverage when they have done something to be proud of; terrible when they are ill and or been caught with their pants down,so to speak. However, it must be horrible for them when they are ill or going through some crisis and all they want is to be left alone. Can they pick and choose what the press gets hold of or are they totally at the mercy of the tabloids? How do some celebrities, such as Elaine Paige and Sheila Hancock manage to hide the fact they had breast cancer? Why do we never here anything scandalous about the Queen, yet the other Royals are shown up on a daily basis doing something stupid. I suppose its a case of you pays your money and takes your choice.
If one more person tells me to 'stay positive' i will ram my fist down their throat! I discussed this with my councillor a few weeks back and she agreed with me, by telling someone to stay positive, as that will give a good outcome, you are more or less saying that those brave women who have died of this disease were not positive! Utter and complete b*****it! My dear brother in law battled mouth cancer 16 years ago, made a 'full recovery' but last year it came back with a vengeance and spread to his lymph nodes, he has spent most of this year in hospital having chemo and radiotherapy together to 'blast' the thing. Nobody could have been more positive than him but the cancer chose not to respect this.
As for Wendy Richards how brave to come out and tell everyone of her further battle with the disease, it must be hard when you are in the public eye, I understand she is marrying her long term partner this week and i do wish them the very best. This disease certainly puts things into perspective. My best friend has recently been diagnosed with oesteoporosis and you would think she was dying, she even tells me i am much fitter and weller than her! Horribly I hope that is the case too!
All the best to everyone out there, Irene I have been following your thread about your ex, you are one brave lady for taking that step but how i support you in this, life is sadly too short to be miserable with anyone who is not prepared to love and cherish you through your illness, you deserve so much better than that!
Love to everyone
The very frightening thing about this disease is that it is so variable. My good friend died recently with bone, liver and lung mets after an earlier diagnosis that gave her in the consultants words, 'the best possible prognosis' only 5 yrs earlier. It seems that Wendy had a similar diagnosis. Then we hear of people living quality lives for many years after a poor prognosis.
It makes me wonder is there any point in giving positive or negative prognosis as they can be wrong, and when they are wrong in the negative, people who expected more get less, people who expected less get more, but always tinged with fear if told they don't have much time.
So sad, and cruel too.
I am glad this thread did not turn into a get well soon card as it were, we do all wish Wendy the very best and hope her cancer can be pushed back for a long time but I am sure she knows the realities of this disease and as someone who is now dealing with advanced breast cancer she will not be burying her head in the sand with all the "keep positive" bull poo.
I know of a lady who was the most upbeat positive person (living in denial?) you could meet and even when her end stage came she was saying to her family that a positive mind and a will to beat it would keep her alive...unfortunately the cancer was obviously not playing by those rules and she passed away within two weeks, another grouchy old person I know who had Liver cancer (not BC mets) was totally despondant and planning her funeral with all morbididty and is still alive and grouchy 14 years on...cancer has no feelings, it does not care if you have a will of iron and a happy sunny outlook, all this positivity does is keep the people around you i n some form of false bubble that you will be ok, ..the reality is we all know what cancer can do, yes it sometimes will not play by the rules and other times it will go into long term remission, but its all regardless of your attitude.
Threads invariably twist and turn in very interesting ways as this one has. I think posters have been very respectful of Wendy Richard but also raised mportant issues about 'postivity' recurrence and survival. Sometimes these issues arise like they have here on surprising threads. This is after all the current issues/hot toplics forum and I think the debate was a good one.
I hope my next essay on my wesbite will be about celebrity cancer..when I can get my head totally in gear!
Lots of us have wished Wendy Richard well with her up and coming treatment..I would hope the BCC Mods would quickly close or better still remove a thread if it turned unpleasant...x
I find this a bit odd. The title of this thread does refer to an individual but the ensuing post questions survival after a breast cancer diagnosis. A lively discussion follows which, as often happens on this board, mutates. What is wrong with that? For my part, I have found this thread far more interesting than just another list of platitudes, because of its diversity.
Wendy Richards, I wish you the very best of results with your treatment and I was very sorry to read of your recurrance. EastEnders has never been the same without you.
I agree wholeheartedly with Dawn. When I saw the title to this thread, I thought it would simply be some posts to wish Wendy well-and we all do wish her well, don't we? But it does seem to have mutated into a much different type of thread, which is a shame.Who knows, Wendy may have logged in, or may do so at some stage in the future, so it would be nice if she saw her name coupled with messages wishing her well, rather than a discussion on positivity, etc.
I am actually quite uncomfortable with threads of this nature. They start by being critical of the press/media and their poor factual reporting but often end up with an intrusive discussion about the life of the individual in question, often making false assumptions. This isn't a criticism of individual posters but just my reaction to the 'type' of thread. We don't know how the individual celeb is really coping as all we have to go on is what the media chooses to print and comments are then based on our take on that. Let's leave these people alone - they are not (to our knowledge) part of these forums and probably wouldnt want to be if they found we were discussing them. Remember all they have to do is google their name, or have a friend tell them what is here! I don't think anyone here has said anything particularly bad or critical of Wendy but some threads in the past have been awful.
Hi Jane, I know lots of us are uncomfortable with hyper mourning but we dare not mention it..so thank you for mentioning it!
We are all different. Sometimes there is an implication that women with secondaries are sad bitter old things whose mission on cancer boards is to upset those jolly positive women with primaries. Well anyone who has been reading my posts for a while will know that my views on cancer, on such mantras as 'thinking positive' and 'brave and inspirational' have been pretty much the same since I first logged onto these forums with primary bc over 4 years ago...my first thread was titled something like: "Thinking positively about my battle with cancer' and was a challenge to those trite mantras.
I know loads of good news breast cancer stories about cancer...a freinds' mum alive and well 35 years later; a colleague NED 20 years later including a regional recurrence 7 years ago; a friend who's had bi lateral mastectomies 25 years ago...and lots and lots more. I also know bad news stories: one colleague dead 2 plus years after diagnosis; another colleague with IBC dead less than 2 years; someone else's mum dead after 5 years.. (all of these are real life examples..I know many more and of course many more from cyber space.)
This is the nature of breast cancer. Thinking positive has nothing to do with it. Recounting good and bad stories doesn't make a good or bad story any more or less likely to happen to you or me. Why do so many people get so churned up by discussing these ordinary facts...good and bad...about breast cancer.
It is awful when we hear of real time freinds or cyber freinds who die and I think we each, if we choose to use on line boards, learn our own strategies for incorporating our loss...on the other hand let's not get into false Princess Diana type hyper shallow mourning for celebrities or cyber people we don't actually know..at all. Let's get sadness in proportion.
There are other dreadful diseases, other tragedies...life is indeed sad and tragic at times.
Watch for the bus!
I totally agree with your post. I too was diagnosed with bone mets three weeks after initial diagnosis and would like to think that I have remained upbeat throughout chemo and rads. Havn't had surgery.
However, hip pain over the last few months is making it difficult some days to remain as "positive" as others would like me to be. I have looked well throughout but at moment I think a little tired as pain waking me and stopping me getting off to sleep - hence being on laptap at this time! I am counting the days to be able hopefully to have some radiotheraphy to help with the pain. Finding it debilitating.
Had bone scan yesterday and see onc next Tuesday for result. I too have been lucky in that I only had the occasional ache and pain previously. Looking forward to getting back to some form of "normality"
I know some women with secondaries who want to know very little about their disease and I know others with primaries that want to know all possible outcomes..outcomes which may or may not ever happen. The ''JUST THINK POSITIVE!!'' posts do irritate me at times although I try and post upbeat messages to others newly diagnosed with mets or having treatments I've been through myself. I've been living with stage 4 from the very beginning. I have bone mets and was diagnosed with them in 2003. Since diagnosis I've never had a day in bed. I take, need, no painkillers right now. This could all change next week, next month, next year I know I've been extremely lucky to have had some good responses to treatments so far and until things change I will continue to live as normal a life as possible. If you saw me you would not have an inkling I was a terminal patient. And I still live in hope some miracle is just round the corner..I know full well it probably isn't but I think you can have hope (rather than trying to remain positive at all times, it must be exhausting) and still be realistic ..and hope can help get you out of bed on a dark winter's morning.
I am three and a half since dx and I know of many women who had their dx 20 + years ago and are still realy well, getting on in age but well. My onc says that with all the better treatment today that may of us are more likely to die of a heart attack or get run over by a bus, lets be honest here we all have to die of something and I try to remain upbeat, I know I am lucky I have kept well all through everyting and I also know it must be hard for those of you who have had this bug*er a 2nd time. for those new to this keep looking ahead do the things you want and take no s*it.
Well for all of us who want certainty -now we have it, Sixpen's breast consultant knows we are all going to die from BC. She (the consultant) is about as cheery as my own Princess of Darkness ( Breast Radiologist in my case).
I know all this talk of positive thinking really grates some people but one of the other things peter harvey says that I really can relate to is the idea of constructive coping which I think is really what people mean a lot of the time... not be happy or any such nonsense idea. When I was wide awake at 4 am with aches and pains last night I was positively determined to get back to sleep and get on with the day somehow... I was not however happy of course.
But I think it is important for those of us who are still just primary girls to try and live our lives and if we want to "stay positive" please let us or I will have to be one of those people who moves on from these forums and personally I'd rather do what I can to help improve treatments and awareness for all including those living with secondaries. I really would, but yet again I see someone on here is feeling a little sheepish about expressing their opinion after some of the comments on this thread, and I'm not asking anyone not to express their opinions but if I'm honest I made the mistake of starting a thread about any positive news when I first join this forum and I did leave for a while after the replies but you can keep an old dog like me down that easily 😉
See... look what's happened. This was a thread about Wendy Richards wasn't it?
I hope she gets longer than they expect and a good quality of life and I hope she has a great wedding.
I suppose it's how you look at it. I certainly don't want to be in the position that I'm in (having had 10 years nearly of remission beforehand) and have lived with secondaries for the past 4 years. If there is any glimmer in the 'depressing' news items is that there are those of us with secondaries who are living longer than we probably would have done 10 years ago.
It seems, when I read articles, that it's always about people who have 'beaten' it or have a 'positive' attitude so in some ways we are actually saying (especially those with advanced cancer) that this is the other side to the story and this is reality for us.
I do consider myself to be a 'long term survivor' (but hate that word) having originally been diagnosed at the beginning of 1995 it's just that I now don't know what's round the corner for me.
It is quite depressing for us all isn't, living with the fear that someday, at some point, we will get secondaries or recurrence. I am just about coming to terms with a primary dx, god knows how I would be if I am told it has spread.
I don't know if my prognosis is good, I do wish someone would tell me because it might actually be better than I think.
With all aspects of the press you do only ever hear of the depressing stories don't you. We don't live in the UK but every night we do watch the news and its always so depressing, about another youngster being stabbed, people being run over by drunk drivers etc. Why can't the news ever have some good stories?
Perhaps its just that those with success stories are too busy getting on with their lives to look at these forums.
Sorry for adding to the depressing thread, my troubles are small in comparison to a lot so sorry for that
This recurrence of poor Wendy Richards has really upset me as well.
I am nearly 3 years since dx with a v good prognosis ( if there is such a thing) and I was just thinking that maybe I would be OK.
I then read that Wendy gets the thing back about 15 years later and she had a v good prognosis at the outset.
I couldnt stop crying last night as I feel nowe I will never have another days peace of mind. Why dont we ever hear of long term survivors in the press??
Sorry for depressing post - just feel bad. ANy uplifting stories anyone?
Love to all
Thanks for this Ann. As Jenny says, those of us living with advanced cancer means that we live with uncertainty every day and when you're in pain or discomfort it's very hard to see the 'positives'.
I too have lost quite a few close friends to this disease, the latest being Cathie3 two weeks ago. She was only 42 and has left 4 children motherless.
is where you will find the article