Blog hop challenge

Thanks to Nancy (Nancyspoint.com) for the opportunity to participate in a Blog Hop challenge. I’m up for a challenge but I’m relatively new to blogging so please bear with …

1. Who are you? If applicable, share anything you want about your cancer (type, stage, when diagnosed, whatever.) Share something about yourself such as where you live, the name of your blog and it’s “mission”, a challenge you have faced or are facing now, or whatever you want.

I’m Julia and I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2016. I found it early and it was small but because it was an aggressive sub-type I needed chemotherapy and targeted therapy in addition to surgeries and radiotherapy.

I live in the UK. I am not sure what my writing will be about or where my blogging and writing will take me but beginning the blog marks the end of procrastination and the beginning of writing. Beginning a blog is a sign of my intention. A waymarker.

I didn’t think I had a mission until I started to write this sentence but I’ve just realised I have many so I’ll share just one for now. One of my missions is to get more people talking openly about cancer by talking openly about it myself.

2.  Have you ever participated in a blog hop before?

No.

 3.  What’s your favourite sort of blog post to write and/or read – personal story, informational, how to, controversial, political, opinion, rant or other?

Depends on my mood.

4.  Describe yourself in three words. Yes, just three!

Caring, reflective, sensitive.

5.  Name three of your favourite books from your youth (whatever age that means to you) that had an impact on you.

Off the top of my head, Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre, George Orwell’s 1984 and Boccaccio’s Decameron.

6.  What are you reading right now, or what’s on your to-read list for when you have time?

A novel: When All is Said by Anne Griffin.

 7.  What’s your favourite dessert of all time?

I like most desserts, my all time favourite is probably apple crumble made with our own apples (and autumn is coming!).

At the moment my go to favourite is figs cooked in a dessert wine and served with dairy free vanilla ice cream.

 8.  Tell us about a special pet you have, had, or would like to have. (Never wanted a pet, that’s okay too.)

Our dog who is so sweet natured and has been with us through ten quite tough years.

9.  What’s something people don’t know about you and might be surprised to learn?

Sometimes I leave my mobile phone at home.

10.  Do you believe healthcare is a privilege or a right?

Both.

11.  What’s your favourite thing about blogging and/or reading blogs?

Accessibility.

12.  What’s something you really suck at?

Map reading!

13.  What’s something you’re pretty good at?

Being calm in a crisis.

14.  How do you escape from cancer (or life in general)?

I love chatting over a cuppa or while walking with friends. I love getting to know people of all ages. I also love solitude.

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Ending and beginning

For some time now I’ve been thinking about writing. Of course I write in my day-to-day life, but I have a hankering to write more. I have had all the self-doubts, including will my writing be good enough? What will I write about? Will anyone else be interested in what I have to say? Does that even matter? Who am I writing for? And so on.

Yesterday I made the decision to start writing today. When I woke up this morning I was surprised to find that I felt excited by the prospect and realised, I ‘can’ write. I rushed into the shower, got dressed and set myself up on the kitchen table with a mug of coffee. Then I thought, what now? How do I want to go about this? What do I even want to write about? Do I want to write a blog, articles, a chapter in a book, a book, books? And the genre?

Then I realised the only way I am going to find ‘my way’ is to live with all the ideas and all the questions and begin the process and that it might be helpful to keep a blog to see how it all develops. So this first blog post marks the ending of procrastination and self-doubt and the beginning of writing.