Tough times … Easy choices May 22, 2010Posted by Ian Clatworthy in Uncategorized.
It’s been a rough few weeks with news from my doctors about a new (rectal cancer) tumor that they are unable to remove. No-one can say with certainty how long I’ve got to live – cancer progression is a very individual thing – but my surgeon has indicated it could be as little as 3 months. Furthermore, there’s nothing Western medicine can do to prolong my life, though it can – and has – got my terrible pain of the last few months under control.
News like that is really hard to process. I wanted a second opinion and ended up receiving 5 or 6 of them from numerous specialists. The consensus was unanimous …
“Go out and enjoy every minute of the time you have left”.
Paradoxically, the worse the news, the easier it turns out to decide what to do. While I’m truly blessed with the best job in the world, it’s time to spend less time in front of a computer and more time with my family and friends, particularly my 3 kids. From Monday, I’ll be working part-time (for the first time since 1988).
Time also for a really good holiday. There are places I’d like to see and, quite frankly, it’s now or never! Given the nature of travel insurance, I’m now unlikely to see many of those places overseas but that still leaves a huge list of amazing places in Australia to visit.
Some people would say I’m lucky to know in advance that my time is nearly up and that many others never get that forward notice. I’m in two minds about that. The down side is that thinking about one’s death becomes terribly paralyzing at times. I frequently get angry about dying so young. There is still so much I want to do and so much I want to see. I strongly believe that we’re all responsible for making the world a better place. I’m proud of what I’ve achieved but, given another 43 years, it could be so much more.
Here’s hoping that I can prove the doctors wrong and live for many more years instead of just a few months. Miracles do happen. I plan to stay out of pain, focus on really good nutrition, rest a lot, enjoy every moment and hope the cancer spreads slowly (or disappears altogether!). In the meantime, here’s hoping someone has a mega-brainwave and cures cancer. How hard can it be?