Weekly Round-Up: In Memory of Rachael Bland


Rachael Bland

Time for this week’s round-up of the best of the blog posts which I’ve read over the past week. These are the posts that have moved me, taught me something, inspired me, and which I’ve wanted to share with you. Don’t forget if you have written a post which you would like readers to see, just leave a comment below.

I begin this week’s round-up with the terribly sad news about Rachael Bland, who I previously featured here on the round-up. For those who don’t know, Rachael was a BBC presenter who had triple-negative breast cancer. She died this week aged just 40 and leaves behind her husband and young son. Her death led to all the old cliches of losing her battle being rolled out again.  Catherine Pepinster, writing in the Guardian newspaper, perfectly captured the frustration of those of us who are sick and tired of the lazy journalistic metaphors used to describe cancer.

If anything still needs changing it’s the notion that having cancer is a battle, as if those who die are losers, while people such as me – still thankfully alive a few years after treatment – are triumphant. It suggests that people such as Rachael were somehow not up to the task of dealing with her illness – a defeated soldier if you like, unlike those of us still trudging across the cancer war zone, scarred physically by surgery and the taking of powerful drugs, and scarred emotionally by the fact we’ve had an illness that could yet come back and kill us.

Many of us have been affected by news of Rachael’s death. Catherine writes about it in her latest post and Juliet‘s beautiful heartfelt tribute made me cry.  For us, Karin offers some advice:

When others die of cancer, I know I will be affected. And I let it. Because it is human, and I don’t want to turn into a machine, even if I could. But I try to keep to a rule. My mental, emotional and physical wellbeing depends on it.

Read her blog to find out more.

A poignant guest post on the Shine Cancer Support blog from Christine on living with incurable cancer.

Life isn’t just about the big milestones anyway. It’s in the boring minutiae of the everyday. When I imagine the future I would have liked, it’s those little moments that I will miss.

Becky captures the loneliness of dealing with grief after the death of a loved one.

Though it’s hard to read Audrey‘s latest post in many ways, it’s also uplifting too – especially as I know that she has just welcomed her first grandchild.

Terri Coutee discusses an important topic this week. Who is responsible for the aesthetic outcomes of breast reconstruction surgery?

Congratulations to Barbara Jacoby, a finalist in the 2018 WEGO Health Lifetime Achievement Award.

A reflective post from Connie on dealing with forced endings in life.

Sending healing thoughts Helen‘s way as she deals with a set-back.

Janet discusses chemo-brain in her latest post.

Fascinating exploration by Ilene on the etymological roots of Cancer and Oncology,

Lovely review by Sarah of a new book on joy.

Some good diet advice from Margaret – “the more of something you bring home, the more you eat!” You’ll find more sensible eating tips on Fabulously Fighting blog.

A super post from Terri Wingham on networking and the power of connecting the dots backward.

Finally this week, I love that Beth took up my writing prompt sharing her greatest strength – you can read all about it on her blog. This week’s writing prompt is below – it would also make for a super journaling prompt if you keep a journal.


Until next week,

Yours with much love always

Marie xxx