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On Reaching THAT Age!

I’ve never thought of myself as particularly young or old. It’s not that I’m vain about my age or unrealistic. It is what it is and you can’t change it, so why worry about it? I’ve never been shy or coy about telling people my age either. As I said: it is what it is. No amount of lying or denial will change the facts.

However, I must admit to finding it very funny recently when dealing with the medical profession, all of whom ranged from a third to two-thirds my age, who kept referring to me as being THAT age.

“You’re at that age when you can expect things to go wrong.”

“You’re doing well – considering your age.”

It seems, once a person is THAT age, we can expect things to go wrong, pack in or generally give up. It was almost enough to make me give up.

No, only joking!

Never once did I consider giving up – I just found it funny and somewhat ironic, as Ron and I had not long completed a 160-km cycle ride in New Zealand and we were probably fitter than we’d been in years.

However, it was during that trip that I received a phone call from Breastscreen Queensland to say that they had found something suspicious on a routine mammogram I’d had just prior to leaving for New Zealand. So, as soon as we returned to Australia I went for further tests and the upshot was that I did indeed have cancer.

After two failed attempts to remove the tumour, I had to have a mastectomy, which proved successful in removing the cancer and I’m now doing well, powering on in my Buzz Lightyear moment: onwards and upwards!

But, what I wanted to announce to you all is that today, according to the government, I have finally actually reached THAT age, the one defined by the powers that be when we become officially over the hill, when we can expect things to go wrong and things to pack in. Though, even if any more bits do, I certainly won’t be giving up. I intend to defy it for as long as I can. And, although I am a year older, I don’t feel a year older – and I intend to get back to cycling and doing other active things I enjoy just as soon as I can.

To all my age mates and former classmates who either have achieved or are about to achieve THAT age as well, may all our futures be happy, healthy and long. More power to us and happy birthday to all of you, whenever your birthday may be!

Taken at the end of our 160-km cycle ride in New Zealand. The fittest we'd been in years!

Taken at the end of our 160-km cycle ride in New Zealand. The fittest we’d been in years!

Ron and I at Russell on the Bay of Islands in New Zealand.

Ron and I at Russell on the Bay of Islands in New Zealand.

The magnificent view of the sunrise from my hospital room when I had my third op.

The magnificent view of the sunrise from my hospital room when I had my third op.

My great friend Heather and I celebrating our birthdays early. This was taken a few days after my third and successful op.

My great friend Heather and I celebrating our birthdays early. This was taken a few days after my third and successful op.

Ron and I with Ruby, about to go out for a celebratory dinner with our precious family. Thanks, guys, it was delicious!

Ron and I with Ruby, about to go out for a celebratory dinner with our precious family. Thanks, guys, it was delicious!

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An Inspiring Read

ebook flat cover copy
In Coppin’ the Chemo, Frances Bolton gives us a unique and optimistic view into what it is like to be diagnosed with cancer and how to tackle the long battle that ensues. If you know someone who has recently been diagnosed with this illness, this book will provide them with hope and the tools they will need to fight the battle of their lives.
May is Cancer Council month and a time for us all to reflect on an illness that is likely to directly affect one in four of us during our lifetime. That’s high odds.
Here are some excerpts from Frances’ book:
‘Sitting in the rainforest, my mind lost in cascades, the world was wet … I drew healthy damp oxygen into my lungs, wondering how on earth I could possibly have cancer on such a lovely, perfectly damp day in such a lovely, perfectly damp spot. I thought back to that awful wet and windy day in July, when I was told by a nurse with a deadpan expression that I definitely had IT. It was my daughter who cried, not I. I was overcome by a strange sensation as I put my arm around her. I realised, in my busy life, that now could be my Down Time. I had a family who loved me, so would I not be gently cared for … cushions appearing for my head and stools for my feet, as if by magic? I would be plied with hot tea and cups of soup… But how wrong could I be?’ ‘And so I arrived at Springbrook – in wet muddy weather, where, through the packing boxes and the up-ended sofa, I could see the clouds drifting towards us from the hills and smell the green of the trees. To me, it was the perfect weather and place to recuperate from a hard year. One which had been filled with waiting rooms, crossword puzzles and fellow sufferers.’ ‘To friends and fellow sufferers – including you who know someone close who is or has gone through this – may you have help in your pain and tears. But also do not be afraid to laugh. Laughter is, after all, just some happy cells in your body jiggling up and down doing their aerobics – and who can argue with that? May those little happy cells exercise so cheerfully that they will push those clumped up bad ones right out of existence.’
Coppin the Chemo is available in print from http://www.authorsally.com/books.htm
or as an ebook from http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/137395

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