I will freely admit to never having heard of the lady until yesterday, but once I had heard of her I was filled with admiration.
A young woman, a journalist for the BBC who found out that she had cancer at quite an early age. She was cleared of it twice but the third time it came back it was terminal and she died at the terribly young age of 45.
Having read an article about her life and her acceptance of what was to come, I was amazed by the courage she showed in her determination to live what life she had left to the full.
I read her blog in full yesterday, funny, warm, cold, technical, heartbreaking and heartwarming all at the same time.
I accept of course that she was in a position a lot of people aren’t and that a lot of her wishes in her “list for living” were made easier by the job she had and the contacts she’d made in it, but even so, I would suggest that after having beaten cancer twice, to be told that its come back for a third time and this time there is nothing can be done, the days must have been dark. During these darkest of days though, she made a decision to write her list, a list of 50 ambitions, some of them so pie in the sky as to be impossible with others very simple things.
She finished writing her list, but she didnt complete all the things on it, but she gave it a bloody good go.
RIP Helen, a woman I never knew personally, a woman I had never even heard of until after she died, but a woman with an indomitable spirit that I know I would have liked if I’d ever had the chance.