My friend Andrea Badenoch died on 4th January. Like me she had breast cancer, and she was first diagnosed in 2000. We talked so much about cancer. We used to laugh about the doctors, making up stupid names for them. She was a great support, and we used to send each other emails all the time, about symptoms, and discussing how we felt about life and death. As she got iller we lost contact. Andrea preferred to be private, and discouraged visitors as she became increasingly unwell. She is a real loss. I feel as if a part of me has gone. I’ve been thinking about the past, about times Andrea and I went away together to write. She was very patient and good at talking about writing. She would worry WITH you about something until you reached a solution.
It is very hard to believe that she has gone. She was still young, with three children, very smart, clever and with many more things she wanted to do in her life. She did everything she could to heal herself, using complementary therapies and conventional treatments. We wanted to write a book about all the people we had been to see between us, some of whom were rather dubious. I am dedicated the Cure For Dying to Andrea…although she is not either of the main characters, she was very much in my heart when I wrote the book.