Saturday 19 March 2011

being positive

You probably haven't heard of Stephen J Gould.  He was a paleontologist, evolutionary biologist and an influential and popular American science writer.  Why am I writing about him in today's blog?

Gould died in 2002 - exactly 20 productive years after being diagnosed with mesothelioma.  How was he able not only to survive mesothelioma for so long, but continue to thrive when the median mortality rate for the disease is less than a year?  

In his book The Median Isn't the Message, Gould writes:

Match people with the same cancer for age, class, health, socioeconomic status, and, in general, those with positive attitudes, with a strong will and purpose for living, with commitment to struggle, with an active response to aiding their own treatment and not just a passive acceptance of anything doctors say, tend to live longer.

Well - the sun is shining and after a few days of emotional turmoil we are both feeling positive :-)  

And long may it last!

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