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As well as sharing experiences with our friendly online community, registered members are able to contact our experienced online team. The Centre is staffed during office hours and the online team aim to reply within 24 hours.

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Robyn's Blog: News from Maggie's online centre head

by Robyn

News about the online centre and other cancer related topics
10 October 2011 at 14:46

Blog Blog Blog

I haven’t been very good about blogging recently  -  Some of you have been in touch to remind me (or maybe just to check I wasn't still on my summer holiday!) Thank you also  to all of you who sent kind comments about earlier entries. so  anyway here I am and what better subject than blogging itself !

I was searching for  articles on the benefits of blogging today . Whilst I didn't find much on blogging, an article in the Scientific American (2008) makes the link between  blogging and expressive writing  for  which evidence exists of well documented benefits including stress reduction, lower blood pressure and feeling better both mentally and physically.    

I like blogging – I even write a personal blog out there somewhere in cyberspace – the anonymity can be very liberating and there is some kind of reassurance that you are being listened to or at least read!

I love reading others blogs too  - how else would I keep up with younger relatives  (“Hello FN!”) and I read as many of the blogs on the online centre as I can.  I am not alone...... the blogs on the online centre are read by lot and lots ....and lots of other people too. 

 If you find that a bit scary and off putting  it is probably worth me pointing out that you can choose after you write each entry who can view it ( if anyone) as  before you post it there is a choice of everyone, Maggie’s friends or just private to you.

This choice of visibility can be very handy if, for example,   friends and relatives want to know how you are getting on and you don’t want to be on the phone saying the same thing ten times after a trip to the hospital to have a dose of chemo or a scan…. you can write it down in a blog for them to read.  Just give them you username  so they know which one to read, set the button for that post hospital  blog entry to everyone and they will be able to read it without registering for the online centre.  On another occasion  you may wish to  write  about the treatment or how exhausting it is with everyone (however well meaning)  asking how you are and ask for your Maggie’s friends  for tips in dealing with it.  

You may  then have a day when you just want to  let rip or write down some private thoughts just for you …. By choosing the privacy settings its  up to you when and what you share…

 Another good thing about blogging – its always there..... It  can really help  to chat to a friend or partner but they may not  appreciate a call  or long chat at 4 am  - Writing your thoughts down can help you to feel less lonely  at times when sleeping isn’t easy.

Tapping away can also be a really good way to get all those thoughts whirling around in your head into some sort of order or, at least somewhere where you can see them one at a time which, in turn can make them more manageable .

This week I have also been reading a book based on a blog  “How I said Bah to cancer!” is described by its author Stephanie Butland as “ a guide to thinking, living and dancing you way through”.  The book is made up of abridged entries of the blog she wrote from diagnosis of breast cancer through treatment.  
Offering “bah” thinking tips to help anyone else in a similar situation It is a very straightforward big sister no nonsense approach which may not suit everyone however many will, I am sure warm to it. 

I have over the years marvelled at the patience of (most)  of the visitors and patients to oncology clinics as they wait for appointments  – Stephanie Butland challenges the system in a refreshing way, highlighting areas for improvement and providing many healthcare professionals with the “other side” She also offers helpful tips for carers and friends

Funny, thought provoking and honest it is well worth a read and would help while away the time in many a treatment or clinic appointment.

Writing a book might be a bit more of a chore however why not give a blog a try? If you are a registered member of the online centre you are very welcome to start one.  Just click on "my blog" on the left hand side of the screen and get started...

  Don’t worry about spelling etc just write your thoughts down and as well as helping yourself you may well help someone else who is dealing with a similar situation.

I am making an autumn resolution to write in mine more often and I will continue to read as many of your as I can

Best wishes and Happy blogging



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