Posted by: cg00n | October 17, 2010

Looking Good

Another month, another bunch of visits to doctors, another uneventful start to autumn.  No new lumps or any other symptoms. Within my head contentment and tranquility reign supreme.  I can’t remember a time when life has felt so good for so long!

In the pursuit of continuing happiness, on Thursday my eight week (not six week, as previously announced) course on mindfulness as an antidote to depression and anxiety started.  There are about a dozen of us, a couple of whom have some previous experience with meditation.  The first few sessions deal with the basics and are unlikely to give me any new ideas.  My hope is that starting with week four or so we will get into techniques specific to dealing with anxiety.  In any case it is helping to focus my attention on my mindfulness practice by forcing me to do more.  I also have a couple of new books to read and I’ll be taking  Shambhala Level 1, a weekend training session offered by our local meditation centre.  More news to come.

Quite a few friends and fans have been in contact with good wishes, words of inspiration and relevant news items.  All of this is very valuable.  The only reason I don’t say thank you more often is because it would probably get boringly repetitive but I am constantly reminded of your support and often reflect on how much that has helped, especially over the last two and a half years.  Doubtless you are all getting lots of brownie points from whatever gods you believe in or are generating good karma for your next life.  If I have anything to say about it (unlikely) you will all be on the New Year’s beatification list.

How would you react to photos of my leg in various states of repair?  It is, after all, almost Halloween with its long traditions of blood, gore and amateur surgery and I expect some of the more macabre-minded among you have wondered what I’m hiding.  In addition it might be useful to have something of an illustrated guide for the benefit (or at least education) of  others.  Needless to say you can expect the usual standards of black humour, bad puns and surrealism that are the hallmarks of this blog.  I can crop out all the naughty bits that are left after the surgeons did their work.  Get back to me via the usual channels especially if you think this is a bad idea.  Or if you have any particularly amusing thoughts on the subject….

And now for our regular

News Roundup

First up:  Cancering.  This is a long but fascinating talk (video, audio or text – your choice) about how the study of proteins in cancer cells may hold the ultimate key to how cancer really works.  My thanks to Dr. D.L of Calgary for this reference.

Three articles specifically about melanoma…

… and one about cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma, another kind of skin cancer (in case one is not enough).

Three more pieces of prostate cancer related news:

  • The notoriously unreliable PSA test may work well if used just once at the age of 60 to determine if any further treatment is required.
  • A simple urine test for the cancer may be imminent.  Interestingly enough it tests for a protein, which suggests that the aforementioned cancering approach may be a good one.
  • There are more calls for studies into the use of  statins in treating the cancer.  This came up last year.

And finally:

Wherever you put the mind, the body will follow

says Harvard psychology professor Ellen Langer.  She is obviously a big fan of mindfulness.  It works for me.



  1. So glad your are doing well!! Pictures would be good-it helps some people relate to whats going on and of course many of us have the same scars in one place or another (ha)

  2. Re the pictures: I know of one forum where they post photos with the word “Spoiler” above them. If you want to see it, you click. If you’re feeling squeamish, you don’t.

    A very suitable Hallowe’en post to this blog. 🙂

    So happy that you’ve had such a good month! Well deserved, I’d say.

  3. Thanks so much for the links to the articles. As the frightened wife of a Stage III melanoma sufferer, I appreciate that you seem to have the best, lastest, most reliable info. I am rooting for you and your family.

  4. I have no problem with pictures–it’ll be the smell that will get to me. Since smell does not currently transmit over the net, I’m safe!

    I have curiosity morbidiity, so satisfaction brings me back.

  5. Good news all around. Wonderful that you’re able to relax and enjoy life between scares, treatments, doctor’s visits, and the like. On first glance BRAF always reads as BARF to me … perhaps I’ve been a nurse for to long or maybe it is a sort of Freudian slip.

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