Running with the missus

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<Image – Cardiff Clowns by Left-hand http://www.flickr.com/photos/left-hand/2964743595/>

As some of you may know, at the end of last year my wife was diagnosed with tongue cancer. Some fairly horrific surgery ensued (grafts of arm skin onto tongue to create a pragmatically termed 'flap', neck dissection to remove lymph glands, further graft from belly to fill the patch on the arm). I'm a queasy male, so clipping toenails has me feeling a bit uneasy, so I have no idea how she endured this.

Then a 6 week dose of radio and chemo-therapy followed. While there are surely no 'good' places to get cancer, one of the insidious elements of it being in the mouth is that as radiotherapy does its business (basically killing cells), you get to taste your own body's decay. Constantly. It would prove to be a very effective torture since there is no escaping it.

After all this though the treatment has been successful and she is now healthier and fitter than ever. Most years we run the Cardiff Half-Marathon, but not usually together, me being all competitive and wanting to improve my time. But this year she set the half-marathon as a goal to mark her recovery, and we'll be running it together. Which brings me on to the inevitably charity call – she has a just-giving page, so if any of you feel like giving, it'd be much appreciated (and no, we won't be running as clowns).

5 Comments

  1. What wonderful news about your wife’s full recovery!
    And I don’t know how you simultaneously manage to capture the full physical horror of tongue cancer in just a few lines while at the same time framing a beautiful story of endurance, strength and recovery—it was a tough and important post, I salute you both.
    Here’s to your family, and the 13 and a half miles you will run together. The unbelievable magic of that word “together.”

  2. Gee, thanks Jim, and thanks for the donation – surely there should be a government policy that a donation from the Rev is matched fourfold by the treasury?

  3. Run well both of you and SO happy that Sarah has made a full recovery. As a big Lance Armstrong fan and as my father has been battling Leukemia for some years – and still running 2 hour marathons at age 71 (he puts me to shame) – I am always inspired and moved by stories like this.
    Any Zombies running by the way?

  4. Glad your on the road to recovery and can assure you that Cardiff is a fantastic event, did it myself about 4 years ago and finishing in the Millenium stadium is awesome.
    Have a good one!

  5. @Mark – thanks very much for the comment and the donation.
    @Martin – ah, they don’t do the stadium finish any more. Agree it was great, but they just end round by the civic centre now.

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