Stories of my disappearance are greatly exaggerated.
I’ve just been diagnosed with breast cancer, so now looking forward to playlists such as “Now that’s what I call Chemo!” followed by the hotly anticipated “Last Night a Surgeon Saved my Life” slated for release in the new year. *
I’ll still present and perform occasionally when going through treatment. We’ll play it by ear, depending on how everything progresses and energy levels. Short Notice bookings might work. I’m optimistic that normal service will slowly resume if the results are encouraging.
To those of you unlucky enough to have some experience of the disease (either yourself, or someone you know) I send positivity and love.
My mum died of cancer when I was a child – details of her medical treatment were whispered in hushed tones in separate rooms, out of earshot and in secrecy. Yet attempts to conceal her terminal diagnosis were pointless as I knew what was going on. With nobody to ask, I felt powerless.
It’s why this very personal post exists: to try the opposite track. Knowledge (and Music) has always been a great comfort, and my curiosity to learn has helped me overcome so many obstacles, achieve so much and connect with frankly extraordinary people while performing or presenting. I’ve explained as openly and as age appropriately as possible to my toddler. Telling children early on is advised by Macmillan and other cancer charities -such a difficult experience to do but it was taken well and felt like the best decision for him.
I may be dealing with cancer now, but as anyone different has always known, there’s simply so much more to us than how we look, our personal struggles, or what equipment we use to access the world. We are still artists, engineers, writers, thinkers, comics, poets, AI magicians, coders, hackers, lockpickers, DJs, storytellers. We laugh at great jokes, cry at terrible movies on planes (well, OK, I do) and enjoy connecting with others through our love of creativity, unconventional thinking. Best of all we love to collaborate with those who challenge and excite us. We crave pure connections which at their best transcend physical and mental capabilities, creating that elusive and magical experience of flow for audiences and performers to share.
In short, you are welcome to ask cancer questions, which I will answer if I feel up to it…. or, we can talk about stuff I still really love, like music, technology and performing. Any great, fun audio books with happy endings? Wholesome comedy video clips and podcasts? let me know!
Want to lend me some Interesting VR/Immersive kit for a day to try out during or after a chemo treatment in London? I’m down for any entertaining tech distractions during my many medically enhanced hours over the next weeks and months. Some things feel rather unpleasant, so if you think it might be fun to see how creative tech could help make procedures more palatable – that sounds kind of awesome to me too. Interested? Do click here to contact.
Finally, to everyone reading this far, thank you so much for our connection – whether it’s IRL or online – however brief, however close, through TV, presenting or hacker / music circles, please know that many of you have been responsible for so many of my happiest thoughts. Your impact has been so positive in helping me want to be better – authentic, inspiring, thoughtful, uplifting – and kind. I wish you all the very best.
P.S *These playlists don’t exist – yet. Want me to make some?
6 thoughts on “Getting into Flow states during difficult times – like going through Breast Cancer”
So sorry to hear your news chin-up and think positive xxx
Beautifully written darling LJ!!
You are amazing and I will be a wind g positive vibes your way xx
Wishing you all the best!
Ok. So here is my recommendation for an amusing and funny podcast series. It’s called By The Book. Two very funny, witty, excitable women try and live by a self help book for two weeks at a time. On balance I think it de-bunks the theory that self help books deliver all they promise but it is very, very funny with some sad bits as you would expect. Anyhow, it gets my vote and there are three series or maybe more to wade through.
Dear LJ (I hope you don’t mind me being familiar). Thank you for posting this and sorry to hear of your diagnosis. What you have written is valuable and you are right we aren’t very good at talking about this area of life although I will say it’s getting better. Communication helps to resolve problems and certainly in this field of medicine any advances in improving medication side effects, saving more lives and generally getting rid of the stigma of serious illness is important. I have a colleague who has just been through some of the process of what you are I guess experiencing and he was open and talked about his experiences. It worked both ways as he got off his chest some of the anxieties you feel about all aspects of his illness and it educated the rest of us into what really happens in the case of dealing with Cancer. I would like to take the opportunity to wishing you the very best and look forward to reading your thoughts, hearing your music and seeing you Broadcasting. Best wishes John Rumens
Not good news, but I’m certain the chemo will work and everything will be back to normal soon enough. Just remember that it is perfectly okay to fear; most sane people would in your situation. I’ll be thinking of you; hoping you are better soon xx