Wednesday, 2 May 2012

My Name is Kirstie Tancock and I will not be defined by one thing, but an everlasting list of things

Have you ever read the hunger games? Especially the last book Mockingjay. Reading this book I felt a great number of similarity's to the main character, Katniss Everdeen. Why? Katniss becomes a symbol of hope a person that people look up to; she goes through huge trials and great trauma. Now I'm not saying I deserve to be a symbol of hope, but I receive a great lot of emails of people saying I'm an inspiration. To me I am just doing what I have to do, kind of like Katniss was. Just trying to survive and part of my personal survival was telling my tale. Katniss goes through a lot of trauma during the hunger games, a lot of loss and generally a hard time, I relate to this as going through my transplant. It was a great trauma. How her trauma was portrayed brought back a lot of feeling and memories and thoughts that I still feel but suppress.

Some days, I feel completely recovered and like I am ready to fight the world other days things feel like they have shifted and changed so much, I have such a great loss of identity, Who I am now and Who I was before transplant has changed, I still feel like me, but I think peoples ideas of me have changed, I guess parts of me I always knew where there, weren't so obvious to them, I was just the sick girl with CF. But I'm not you know, I'm so much more. So I have changed in peoples minds and that has left me feeling very isolated, do I fit into the CF community? Am I normal? No I am neither, I fit into this very small minority of people, transplant patients, not even transplant patients really mostly cf transplant patients as I feel like it is only this small group of people that get me. Thing is I personally would quite happily fit into all the groups, but it feels like they just wont have me anymore.

So on days when I am feeling like everything has changed so much and I am not sure where I belong, Like Katniss says 'My name is Katniss Everdeen, I am 17 years old, my home is district 12.' I say to myself, 'my name is Kirstie Tancock, I am 22, I live with my husband Stuart, My dog Kia, in a small town called Honiton' Some times its just saying the simple things and not let all the complicated stuff define me. But instead of focusing on the stables in my life. My husband, my dog. Because everything else is so changeable. Transplant as much as I knew it wasn't a cure, I hoped it would provide me with normality, Normality is something I am never able to reach, I don't fit into a box.

Have you ever wondered where you belong? The answer is in your loved ones arms, with a few simple stables. Stop trying to define yourself, stop trying to be so keen to fit in and belong, yes we as human beings need to connect to people with similar experiences and mind sets but this isn't us full stop. One part of me doesn't define me. I am so much more and so are you. Because really you can be who ever you want to be.


  1. I think I can empathise to a certain extent. I spent from 15 to 18 in and out of hospital having tonic clonic seizures in my sleep about 3 times a week and up to 4 times in a night. Not only had others defined me as 'the boy with epilepsy' (see my lose Hunger Games reference :P) but thats the identity I took on in my rare moments of coherent thoughts. When the seizures were medicated and I stopped having them I had a complete identity crises, I had lost who I made myself through no one else's fault but my own. I had to re-evaluate my life and build myself up again. As horrible as it sounds, the first thing that happened to me is I completely changed my social group. Something just didn't feel the same about them anymore.

    You're right though, illness has a big effect on life, it is part of your identity and makes up part of who you are, all experiences do... but it shouldn't define you because then its has power and influence. Thats how I feel anyway.

    Glad to hear you are doing better. Best wishes :)

  2. This makes a lot of sense to me, I think you are being so brave by sharing your story. I also think 'just being you' is the right approach to have, keep that in mind, and never feel you have to do anything that you dont want to. You have already done so much to raise the profile of organ donation in the UK, you should be proud of that.

  3. Kirstie this blog is quite simply both amazing and revealing and you continue to shine that torch of both hope and insperation to many .I too have a disease which is not directly life threatening as such but could be in the wrong situation and circumstances as my immune system is so poor I have to be regularly monitored by the medical proffesion in general and I am on phenominal amounts of medication that (simply keep me ticking over ).I read your blogs etc with great interest and must say that the people who you converse with including myself are a massive family with specific goals and targets ie life itself and the desire to help others .Illness does change you as a person and in many ways in a more positive manner looking at life through new eyes as it were .Continue your work Kirstie and may God be a driving force behind you .I must say that Stu and your little dog are absolutely awesome in your life and I also have a great respect for him .I too have close family bonds and 2 mad yorkshire terriers which I love dearly .In conclusion I am delighted you appear to be doing so well and I can associate with the David Guetta song laserlight in relation to yourself and it must surely be at the top of your list of songs with meaning .God bless you and Stu and your little dog I and many others think your an angel .

  4. Tanzy, this blog is really nice to read.

    Well this is a different subject, I'm not saying your wrong in what you say, because like you say everyone plays their own part in life.

    Also, you have taught me so much through your lovely personality, because before I wached your program that I saw on TV or read your blogs, I was very nagative about my self, but honestly you have made me feel so much better about things that happen in life.

    I really mean this Tanzy. Also, thankyou, you are truely a very nice person.

    I also think your very good looking for your age.

    I arn't been sacastic at all. I really, really mean this.

    All the best wishes

    Harry W