Five days before I started this blog I was diagnosed with a “fairly serious” melanoma.  This is my way of recording thoughts, plans, screaming fits and with any luck progress.  It may be very short, either because it turns out to be not so serious or because it turns out to be very serious indeed.  Maybe it will give you something of an insight into the whole process and how at least one mildly crazy human being goes about coping with it.  Or not.

If you want the story from the beginning, start here.



  1. Since hearing your news I have been talking with close friends about melanomas and related topics. Everything discussed focussed on the likelihood of survival in the light of numerous successes known by these folks.

    I know that you are a most responsible realist and a very thoughtful, knowledgeable and caring person. I just hope you can find the kind of reassurance that you deserve. I know also that you have a wonderful family who will give you total support. Believe that this challenge can be and will be conquered. You certainly have a wealth of friends also and their input into this website is indeed interesting to all of us. Thanks for keeping me on the list. Your welfare is as significant to me as my own and I’m heading for a dermatologist too. My love, Helen

  2. Fancy meeting my words on your blog. Your birthday came and went yesterday. Since we always celebrated together, I’m thinking of those days when your dad gathered us together around Mothers’ Day and we were a family at the University Club. His spirit hovers with us at this time of year.

    It’s also house warming time for you and your family while I am investigating a return to my family in Fargo, ND. Can’t yet predict if this will be a reality but I need to come to a decision soon. These are momentous days and now my aim is to see how much I am brave enough to discard from these large accumulations in the boxes of my storeroom. Wish me a great sweep-out which ought to result in the feeling of freedom

    My love to the family and a warm, belated happy birthday.

  3. As a University Radio alumnus and a cancer survivor, I thought I’d weigh in.

    My cancer story started in April 1980 when I was diagnosed with testicular cancer that had spread to my stomach (a spot), my lung (5 cm diameter), and my neck (2 cm diameter), and it was growing very fast.

    I was the first person in Calgary to have a new chemotherapy drug that is now the standard treatment. To my great fortune, the drug turned the statistics from 95% fatal to 95% recovery. In 6 – 4 day treatments, the cancer retreated and hasn’t reappeared to this day. (I also had radiation and surgery).

    My treatments were actively unpleasant and it took an effort of will to continue even though they were working. The other thing in my favor was that I had incredible friends to lean on … I believe this is very important.

    My thoughts are with you.

  4. I’m thinking of you every day and wondering how your treatments are progressing and how you are feeling. Do let me know the state you are in at this time. June is around the corner and summer will soon be in full bloom. Yet, it has been quite cool and rainy here in Calgary. I did catch a pleasant day for meeting the Charlebois brothers at the River Cafe on Princes. Island. We enjoyed a delicious lunch outdoors. You must be busy moving into the new house. I have a guest next week from Ottawa but will call you as soon as she leaves after Wednesday. Until then, Helen

  5. Finally found your blog but haven’t caught up with reading the postings. Sorry to have jolted you out of sleep today. Back to wrestling with my big decision about moving across the border. It is due on Tuesday.

  6. Hey, I had a chance to read through your blog and found it to be very inspiring and insightful.

    Our organization, Mesothelioma Center, just finished up a batch of interviews with mesothelioma cancer survivors and published them on our site: http://www.asbestos.com/mesothelioma/wall-of-hope.php. Their stories provided me with a lot of perspective on what it must be like to be battling this disease. Maybe you can find them rewarding as well. I’d love the chance to get in touch with some other survivors for opportunities to share their story as well.

    Maybe you can help us spread mesothelioma cancer awareness by posting some quality information on your blog. Let’s work together to spread as much cancer awareness as we can!

    Best Regards,
    Mike Postorino
    Mesothelioma Center

  7. I’ve been battling the beast in my right leg since 2009. I’ve not been offered direct injections of IL-2.. How did you and your doctor come to determine your course of treatment? I live in the states and have heard of IL-2 given as IV therapy. I go in for surgery number 4 to remove 2 more tumors and wonder why IL2 injections have not been considered. I wish you continued success with battling the beast.

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