I write this, the day before I go in for my surgery for a partial thyroidectomy to remove a one centimetre growth that:
- Is minimum 60% chance that it’s cancerous
- The procedure could have lasting damage to my voice
Since discovering the diagnose less than two full weeks ago, I’ve:
- Launched my band
- Released our first single
- Done our first gig (hopefully not our last)
- Focussed my instagram account to ensure it tells this story
- Been interviewed on BBC local radio
- Had a full hour given to me on independent local radio
I think it’s fair to say that this has been cathartic. Letting people know on Facebook certainly was.
Thing is people are understandably private about health issues, particularly in the UK. Suffering in silence is so British. (Unless it’s about Brexit, but, y’know). But when I let people know that I had to have a scary singer surgery to remove a lump off my thyroid and that it might have a lasting effect on my voice, the outpouring of love and support was overwhelming.
I’m not crying, you’re crying.
Literally people I hadn’t seen in years were sending me private messages of support. Sharing their own and their loved ones health scare stories all in the spirit of making little old me feel better.
The hastily arranged band launch couldn’t have gone better. The venue was packed, the band was great, I was greater. What more could I ask for?
Then there was Instagram. My new pal and Social Media ninja from America gave me some heads up about the best way to engage, and then the well wishing came from all over the shop. Particularly America, interestingly, and from communities of people ranging from the medical profession to those who have thyroid or cancer stories or from people in kick ass rock bands who, y’know, like my jam…
I think the point of all of this is, that it’s good to share. In terms of lessons learned since getting my diagnosis, I’d say that:
- It’s your journey and there’s no point in wallowing, get out there and own it
- People are kind and letting them know will ensure a gulf of love and support, the likes of which are generally reserved for milestone birthdays and the birth of your kids, and that is succour for the soul
- Getting on social media will help you realise you are not alone
- All advice is good but you need a filter to sift through to the stuff that’s relevant to you
- Seize the day
In case you missed it, here’s a cool little link to the interview I did with Mr Mick Coyle on Radio City Talk in Liverpool. It launches the blog and the band in one fell swoop.