Friday, September 30, 2011

The Best Prescription For Cancer.

 Yesterday's post for Friday's This Moment was of a Black-backed Gull, that graced the railings of New Brighton Pier. New Brighton is the Eastern shoreline suburb and beach of Christchurch, New Zealand where I spent much of my youth getting into the usual sort of mischief young kids of that period got up to. Swimming and sun-baking on this long stretch of sandy beach fills many of those nooks in my memory.

The often severe sun-burning may also account for the constant vigilance required these days to monitor for melanoma; already one has been removed.

 Two contemporaries have succumbed to cancer, initially diagnosed as  melanomas and excised, but later reappearing as cancer in other organs. Both died way too young. Early detection is vital. 

New Brighton beach looking north from  the pier.

My brush with melanoma started when my physiotherapist suggested I should have a mole on my back checked out. An excision was performed by my doctor under local pain-killer and the cut away sample sent off for biopsy. I was called in when the results came back and sent to a skin surgeon.
The specialist reckoned the melanoma was in remission when it was removed: biopsy indicated it was smaller than it could have been, hence the need to ensure all suspect cells were removed, so a deeper, larger excision need be done.
 Now why was that I asked?
"Because your immune system is attacking it." advised the specialist. "Something has boosted your immune system."
"Interesting that the previous year I had cut out drinking beer and now enjoy a couple of glasses of red wine each evening."
"You keep on doing that then!"

So that's the best prescription a medical practitioner has ever given me!

Amazing that when I began to write this article, I intended to just post up a few photos to illustrate where the picture of the seagull was taken, and here it is turning into a post about cancer awareness.
 But that's the way it goes, as October is Breast Cancer Awareness month here-blognostics-for-jens-sakes-pinktober

No doubt about it- red wine is fine! Keep those anti-oxidant levels up...the enjoyable way. 

And remember- early detection!

Let's get back to New Brighton Pier and seagulls.

New Brighton Pier looking south.

Walking out on the pier. Our gull friend is just visible on the left railing.

Early this month we took a trip back to Christchurch, our hometown. It was a very nostalgic return, the first since earthquakes have struck, so it was a very sad, and at times an emotional visit to many of our old haunts. The old pier of our earlier days, which was built in 1894, has been replaced with a new one in 1997. You'll note a slight slump in the railing line: movement resulting from earthquake.

 Enjoy these pics of our posing friend, and the scenery. A cool spring late morning. 

"What? You want my pic?"
"This way?"

"I think my left profile is best. Can I have a fish now?"

Keep well. Remember - Early detection!

Check out Breast Cancer Survivor Week
at- Bognostics-for-jens-sakes-pinktober   



Maryhocam said...

You're right early detection is so important, when my Dad's cancer was diagnosed it was way too late. He died two weeks later. Doctors reckoned that the cancer was there at least two years.
You're photographs are beautiful. I'm glad your post took the turn it did. This is a warning everyone should hear.

Roy Durham said...

great post Jim and i like the photo. any disease is cured best if found early. i don't know where i would be if they had not found my heart disease when they did. thank you for the post and god bless

Ravenmyth said... is like a painting..when you are never sure of the outcome and what will change as you cover the happy there was another layer on your Gull post...very informative and a success story for you and all of us who get to share with you... That is what we want to hear...more success stories...too many of our loved ones have been taken....great post...

tbaoo said...

thanks jim - it looks like alfred (my seagull) has flown the away from the gold coast .. some might say the home of skin cancer ;( cheers alan

Anonymous said...

Early detection saved 3 of my friends.. I loved the way post turned out...

sulekkha said...

Great advice Jim, I too know the importance of early detection and prevention is better than cure. I have a multi-nodular growth in my thyroid gland and get FNAC(Fine needle aspiration cytology) done every year. So far all is well. Lovely pictures btw.

The Poet said...

My first visit here from Facebook.

Awesome photos and that gull definitely looks like its posing for the camera!

Great information about cancer. A few months ago, I saw a program on TV about a lady who already had skin cancer, but who still wouldn't stay out of the sun/sunbed. Doesn't make any sense to me. I guess some people will never learn or just don't value their own lives.

Awesome post!
Thanks for sharing.

My most recent post: Thief In The Night

photos by jan said...

Wonderful post. Love the seagull pics. I too am an early detection survivor. When 24 I went in for a routine PAP test. they found bad cells, I had everything removed and 20 years later no return. I was blessed. Early detection is the key.

AJ said...

Tell the seagull it is photogenic whichever way it is looking. :)

You're right - early detection can be life-saving. My mother almost ignored a lump on her breast more than a decade ago (it wasn't painful and quite small), but good sense got her to see a doc. Turned out to be malignant. I still shudder at the thought we could've lost her then.

Thanks for the red wine tip. Already read about its health benefits before, but first time to read that a doc recommended it. :)

JIM said...

It is really amazing how far we have come in fighting this disease. My brother just beat throat cancer his first wife died from it about 10 years ago and the treatment is so advanced now he was able to beat it!! We are all happy your battle was successful!!!

Mari Sterling Wilbur said...

Great advice about cancer - scary stuff!! Your photos are gorgeous! So blue and sparkling. That gull is a friendly looking guy!

Jim said...

Thanks everyone. It is amazing how many people don't find out about cancer until too late. So I have a check up every 12 months. Everyone should.