A clear MRI scan is as scary as a scan showing growth sometimes.

As I heard

from my oncologist this week that my scans are looking great, I was very happy but at the same time already petrified about my next MRI in August.

It’s like you’re just waiting for the bad news one, this is our internal negative bias at play.

I live with hope that they will stay clear but after 10 years of scans I also live with a deep fear. I feel I am doing one big balancing act.

I have never run a world record, in fact I have never really held a world one.

I think we once rowed a world leading time but that was it.

But if you were going to break a world record, how would you imagine it?

For most of us it would be in front of a huge crowd, with people cheering you and pushing you.

The stadium erupting as if it was Usain Bolt’s 100m world record is probably how most athletes would see it.

To see the return of sport has been a welcome break

from reality of what we all face.

However in our current covid19 sporting world things are far from the norm.

When the Diamond League returned in Oslo this week it was fitting it was tagged as the Impossible games.

It certainly showed some out the box thinking, running simultaneous competitions from around the world.

Renaud Lavillenie competed from his back garden.

The Olympic champion

went head to head with Duplantis in the stadium whilst a Kenyan team were battling winds and rain from another empty stadium in Nairobi running against a Norwegian team.

You could argue it wasn’t fair, but for me it was just great to watch some sport and hopefully the start of what might be some kind of athletics season.

In a near empty stadium the cardboard crowd witnessed both European and World records fall in Oslo.

It transported me away

from the news on other platforms and the helicopter hovering above my house filming the streets of London as tension builds around more protests.

As Norway’s Karsten Warholm settled into his blocks to run the 300m hurdles, there was no need for the stadium announcer to ask the crowd to be quiet.

There was no one on his outside to chase, just empty lanes either side.

However Warholm did not need any competition to smash the world record.

What the impossible games gave me was hope.

Some psychologists say optimism is naivety around believing that everything will be alright even when we know the reality of our situation is pretty bad.

Hope on the other hand is a deep belief that you can get through anything, but are fully aware of the reality you face.

Something I think we as a society need right now as I feel we aren’t far from the tipping point of anarchy here in London.

Someone who has an abundance of hope is my old team mate Liz Saul, you may recall I wrote about her last year.

We are both under the care of UCLH oncology and I messaged Liz this week to say my neck hurts.

In some way I was leaning on my friend as I know she can relate to the pain I feel.

I guess I was searching

for some of Liz’s hope for myself as I felt I was living more in fear this week than hope.

In typical Liz style she replies casually saying that

she had ended up in A&E

as her breathing was


She explained more scans showed her cancer had progressed in her lungs and on her spine.

However rather than focusing on her situation, before I could reply she was asking about me.

We have lots in common but the one powerful thing we both share is that fear of a clear scan.

As we chatted around the paradox of the clear scan Liz’s zest for life as always came through and as I gazed out the window I reminded myself of my purpose.

To live where my feet are, to deal with the next scan when it comes and never let go of hope.