The Journey in 600 words.

By Posted in - Blog on August 28th, 2016

This is going out to 15,000 head and neck cancer patients in the UK and Europe. Get your low numbered signed copy while you still can, x

The Death and Life of Psycho Syd

Remember when you were young; you shone like the sun. Now there’s a look in your eye like black holes in the sky. CANCER.

The clinical nurse handed me the DS 1500 form so my benefit claim could be doled out immediately. My bulging eyeballs focused on the words TERMINAL ILLNESS before glancing back at the nurse. I whispered, “This means I’m gonna die.”

She held my quivering hand and  compassionately  responded, ” I am sorry but your tumour is very large and advanced.” I gazed in uncomfortably numb shock at the cream wall as the silence drowned the screams. 

Just a few months back I was sporting a deep golden tan, employed in the tropics as a Film Maker and right here right now I am as white as a ghost, on benefits with one foot in the grave.

I had inoperable Stage 4 neck cancer.  Three courses of mind bending chemotherapy to poison the tumour; After each of the first 2 courses I  was admitted to an isolation ward for a week with my very own Zimmer frame.  My bats in the belfry brain was alive to the fact that I was dying.


The oncologist informed me that no further chemo was possible. At least my final hours wouldn’t be in chemical La-la land before ending up as a stiff in a fridge in the morgue. Always look on the bright side of life.

The prognosis was 12 months to live. However, I could burn the tumour by going on the harrowing chemo radiotherapy trip that only had a 1 in 5 shout of working. More chance of Leicester City winning the premier league I laughed. Seems like death is the only thing I’ve got left to live for!

Two weeks of brain damaging should I stay or should I go deliberation before the madcap finally laughed and opted for 6 weeks of treatment at Preston Royal Inferno! At the end of ordeal I was a death warmed up burnt and blistered bag of bones sprawled on my sick sofa eight miles high on morphine pouring sickly yucky liquid into my peg tube to keep me alive.

My mum died to join my dad on the other side. Next my wife bent her mouth to my ear with her face twisted in anger and rage and screamed, “Ghostface hurry up and die.” She abandoned me and the kids aged 14 and 4. I was alone taking care of 2 young children while fighting for my life. You may be the loneliest person in the world but you’ll never be as lonely as me.  

It’s not easy facing up when your whole world is black. With the help of a few close friends, the staff at the ENT department and The Swallows support group. I cut out all processed food and became a raw vegan drinking a rainbow of fruit and vegetable juices and also forced my broken body to exercise.

Now it is August 2016.  Just to prove that sunshine always follows thunder I am fit and healthy and have a tasty new female on my arm; my kids love her too. If someone would have told me a few years back I would  be grinning like a Cheshire cat one day in the future I would have replied, “Not a moggy in hell’s chance.”

Shine on you crazy diamond.

Do yourself a massive favour and order the book. It may save your life!

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