Past My Prime

March 11, 2010

The Biopsy Report has suffered a knock-out punch. The first round of judging for the 2010 Irish Blog Awards has been completed and my blog has failed to progress in either of the two categories for which it was nominated.  I just gotta accept it, this blog is now officially, a has-been 😦

Seriously folks, I’d like to thank those of you who kindly nominated The Biopsy Report for the Best Specialist Blog and the Best Personal Blog award. Having been a finalist in each of these categories in the past, I’m more than happy to take a back seat this year and watch the fun from the sidelines. And anyway, I’ve already reaped huge rewards from this blog. Not only has it yielded some fantastic blogging friends, it’s also succeeded in keeping me focussed and connected throughout the past difficult year with my health. For that alone, I’ll always be grateful.

I’m delighted to find that all of the blogs (bar one) which I nominated for a blog award, have made it through Round 1. I congratulate you all on your success and wish you the best of luck in the next round of judging. Health permitting, I look forward to meeting up in Galway at the end of the month.


Blog Post of the Month

May 12, 2008

The Irish Blog Awards under the able leadership of Damien Mulley, have come up with another great idea.

“As a way of keeping interest going in the Blog Awards, there will be a “Blog Post of the Month” awarded to an Irish Blogger/Group of Bloggers who has/have written what the judges deem the best post that month.”

And here is my nomination for this award:

I have no hesitation whatsoever in nominating Grannymar for her post The light went out.

This post quite simply blew me away. In fact, judging by the comments, everyone who’s read it was blown away. It touched the hearts of all, young and old and indeed many of us were reduced to tears.

Grannymar wrote this post on the tenth anniversary of the death of her husband, Jack. It is a beautiful tribute written with great courage, wisdom, honesty, grace and enormous love.

By writing about her loss, Grannymar has overcome the taboo surrounding death and dying and I’ve no doubt that her words will help to ease the journey of others through bereavement. She also deals brilliantly with the thorny subject of the insensitivity shown by some people on meeting a bereaved person. She reminds us to be careful of what we say as ill-chosen words can be very hurtful when emotions are raw. But most of all, Grannymar illustrates beautifully how the human spirit can overcome adversity and begin to find joy in life once more. She is truly inspirational and her daughter, Elly can rightly be very proud of her.

I highly recommend you pop over to Grannymar’s to share in this uplifting post but don’t forget to bring some tissues. It’s moving stuff!

This post truly deserves to win a Blog Post of the Month Award.


Blog Land

April 22, 2008

Today is the first anniversary of this blog. Hip Hip, Hip Hip, HURRAY!

Okay, so I know some clever dick is going to tell me that the tool bar shows The Biopsy Report started in June, not April! You’re right, it did but this blog actually came into existence this day last year. If you don’t believe me, scroll down and have a look at ‘archives’. The blog was originally known as Que sera, sera and after a few months of dipping my toes into the blog pool, I decided to make a few changes and start all over again. That’s when The Biopsy Report was born.

How well I remember those first few tentative steps into ‘blog land’. I hadn’t a clue what the whole blogging concept was about but my son, Robin, kept telling me “You’ll love it, Mum!”. He was right, of course. I totally adore it and now I can’t imagine life without blogging. My friends think I’ve lost it but they don’t know what they’re missing! He! He! Hardly a day goes past without me announcing to someone “but one of my blog friends says this” or “one of my blog friends does that” and it raises some interesting looks. Okay! Maybe I have lost it but I tell you what, if this is losing it bring it on, I want more!

So, some 22,000 visitors, 2 blog award nominations and a whole lot of fun later, here I am celebrating a year of giving an insider’s view, from a patient’s perspective, on what life is like within the health service. To sow the seeds for this, I had to put my story out there first and this had the added bonus of bringing welcome support and understanding from all my blogging friends. I used to talk about my medical saga as being a lonely journey. How things have changed! This blog has really helped me to find the plot and I’m hugely grateful to everyone who’s given support. Now that I’ve got my own woes out of the way, I’ve started to focus on the bigger picture of our rapidly crumbling health service. I don’t pretend to be an expert. I just say it as I see it and hope that by exposing the various issues, it will get people to think more about what sort of health service they want, and need. They say your health is your wealth. Sadly, in Ireland it’s rapidly becoming more of a case of your wealth is your health. I’m determined to do all that I can to raise awareness of the flaws within the system, as I see them. Some day, you may be very glad that I did.

And now, where did I see that great lasagne recipe yesterday? I’m off to give it a whirl! Thanks! Grannymar.


Proud Mum

March 2, 2008

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Wow! That was some surprise last night. I attended the Irish Blog Awards as a finalist in the Best Personal Blog category and ended up collecting the winner’s prize for the Best Technology Blog. And I know nothing about technology!

My son, Robin, was the overall winner of the Best Technology Blog award for his personal blog ByteSurgery. It was a well-deserved win but then I would say that, I’m his Mum and I’m allowed!

Robin is based in Singapore this year so couldn’t be present on the night. Over the years, he’s won many awards so I suppose I should have known better and had some words prepared for last night, to accept the award on his behalf.

So, Robin – sorry to embarrass you but here’s what I really wanted to say had I not been so overcome by stage fright…

Congratulations! I’m not in the least bit surprised you’ve won this award. Your technological skills constantly amaze people wherever you go and when combined with your innovative and leadership skills, you have the potential to go far, my boy!

I remember so well that as a baby, you hardly slept at all and you had us all exhausted by your ability to keep going and going. People would try to reassure me by saying that it was the sign of a very active brain. Active? It never bloody stops! And all your wonderful achievements in life so far are testament to this.

You are the reason that I got into blogging. You recognised in me a story needing to be told and I’ll never be able to thank you enough for pushing and cajoling me to start writing. I’ve never had so much fun in my life!

I’m very proud of you, Robin. Thank you for giving me another great reason to celebrate this Mother’s Day.

Keep up the great work. My nursing home depends on you!

I’m also really delighted to add that the category my blog was nominated for, was jointly won by Grannymar and Head Rambles (Grandad). I couldn’t have wished for a more fitting outcome. Their blogs are fantastic and they both hugely deserved to win this award. If you haven’t already done so, I highly recommend you go visit them.

Go! Grannymar and Grandad, Go!

Important Update: I forgot to thank my wonderful escort, and very skilled taxi driver for last night’s awards.

Thank you Poppy. You make Mother’s Day all the more special! 😀


Blog Awards

February 11, 2008

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The Biopsy Report has been short-listed!

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And the red carpet has been rolled out!

I was out for most of the day and came home to find ‘The Biopsy Report’ positively bubbling with excitement. This blog has made it through Round 1 of the Irish Blog Awards and it’s been awarded a Vanilla Award!

I learnt this evening that my blog has been shortlisted for an Irish Blog Award, in the Best Personal Blog category sponsored by Microsoft Ireland’s Developer and Platform Group. I’m not often stuck for words, but this news has left me flabbergasted. I am humbled to be listed alongside some eminent bloggers whose blogs I already admire and enjoy enormously. I am also proud to appear on this particular shortlist as thanks to the huge expertise of Damien Mulley, the Irish Blog Awards now have an impressive judging system in place. All of the nominated blogs have been assessed by a panel of judges and advancement to the final round, was based solely on merit. This is not a popularity contest and so I happily recommend you pop over to the Irish Blog Awards to have a look for yourself.

Then the absolute icing on the cake today, was to receive a Roar for Powerful Words award from Absolute Vanilla…(& Atyllah). Vanilla is a writer of enormous talent and her beautifully illustrated blog has a huge following of loyal fans. When Vanilla first left a comment on my blog, it blew me away totally. She has a powerful and very moving way with words and I feel privileged to be able to share in her world. I can highly recommend a visit to her blog.

When I started writing this blog last year, all I knew was that I had a story to tell as a result of my experiences as a long-term patient. I was a total newcomer to blogging but thanks to masses of help and encouragement from my son, Robin, I soon discovered a whole new and exciting world. I never could have imagined that the blogosphere would turn out to be so much fun. If you’d told me that I’d get a thrill out of hitting a button that says ‘publish’ or ‘submit comment’, I’d have laughed at you whereas now I’ll happily admit that I’m totally addicted to pushing those buttons. I’ve found friends, companionship, humour, insight, wisdom, interest, and much more through blogging. Thanks to everyone who’s contributed to this fun and I’d especially like to thank Absolute Vanilla and the Irish Blog Awards for giving ‘The Biopsy Report’ a real reason to be proud. I salute you all.