Who is behind the Feisty Blue Gecko?
I am a Scottish woman, who has been living and working in Asia (as a humanitarian and development professional) since mid 2000. After 16 incredible years in Asia, the time has come to move continent, country, job and home and move to Africa with an interesting bundle of baggage.
I have lived and worked in Nepal, Mongolia, India, Sri Lanka and latterly spent seven years in Myanmar during times of phenomenal change. There is a flavour of my “other life” here.
And what is behind the Feisty Blue Gecko Blog?
October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. I had just taken up my new post in Myanmar in 2009 when I was diagnosed with Stage 2b/3a Breast Cancer. This blog has aimed to describe my experience of a very common diagnosis in a very unusual setting, providing a unique perspective on a subject of importance and interest to women.
I discovered I had breast cancer on 2 October 2009, so I think I have contributed quite a bit to Breast Cancer Awareness. I don’t advise this approach – there are easier ways. This blog is one of the easier ways.
In the early days of diagnosis and treatment, writing this blog aimed particularly to help me process and deal with what happened and what continues to happen. To share one experience of what is a very common disease. To tell my story as it unfolds, in a way that helps me and keeps family and friends with insights to what goes on during and after treatment.
This blog has documented that record of the unexpected. I had absolutely no idea where it was going when I started, and still can’t be entirely sure. To this day, it still depends on many unknown factors, in particular, the “elephant in the room” – possibility of progression or recurrence. Life changed at times beyond recognition on my diagnosis and I found that I had a great deal to get off my chest. Quite literally. This has been the biggest and scariest challenge of my life. Breast cancer is unknown in our family and when I was diagnosed I had not been close to anyone while they were undergoing any form of cancer treatment. I know that much of this is revealing and personal, but I have been encouraged by the number of other blogs by women with breast cancer so I think I’m entitled to have a shout too! We are all different and I know my perspective is also unique.
This part of the story started on September 23 2009 and these are the headlines, in mainly chronological order.
To the future!
While I remain in reasonably good health, the focus has enabled greater attention to life and work overseas. I am constantly inspired and amazed by my surroundings and never tire of observing and recording the rich, tiny details which surround me.
“Life is not about waiting for the storms to end, but learning to dance in the rain!”