For posterity’s sake, this is my Facebook post from yesterday. I’m glad to have got it out of the way:
Those who know me well know I don’t like fuss or bother. I’m old school, proud and independent. I like doing things my way and will shrug off unwanted attention. It’s not ideal, but I’m too old to change now. I have news that will shock some of you, but I ask that you moderate your reactions.
I was diagnosed with cancer yesterday. It was not unexpected but surreal nonetheless. I have a cancerous growth in my right nostril and cheek – sinonasal cancer. This is quite a rare variation, apparently, which is something to hang my hat on, I suppose.
I’m putting this out there because I want to get it out of the way early and avoid any fakery down the track. Now you know. Chances are, I’ll need all the help I can get, but please withhold your sympathy because I don’t know how to respond to it. What I need now is strength, but magic charms, incantations, miracle cures and potions are welcome.
I’m not going to gild the lily. The weeks ahead look pretty grim. There are tests next week to check if it’s travelled and where, or if it remains localised. Then, I have serious surgery – 12-14 hours – to come, after which there’s chemo and radiotherapy. It’s 14 weeks of intense treatment.
Without wanting to sound too much of a wanker, I take comfort knowing this is what I do best: fight. I’ve had hard times before and endured. I’m pig-headed and competitive. Others might say, a pain in the arse. I might get beaten, but I won’t walk away. There’s a tough road ahead, but I hope to come to the end of it and find the way forward clear.
This is not the sort of attention I like, but it is what it is.