BBC News science and technology writer Ivan Noble was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumour in August 2002.
Since then he has been sharing his experiences in an online diary.
When I wrote the time before last, I gave the awful news I so hoped to keep away in the distance.
We had been hoping for a breather. Maybe six months of calm before the storm.
Instead there was a cancer relapse so virulent and unexpected that for an instant no-one seemed sure what to say.
But as I write, 2005 dawns. I have had five weeks to adjust and they feel like months.
My kind and brave father and mother let me tell the story of another cancer.
My father was diagnosed with cancer of the bowel around two months ago.
We are optimistic about his prognosis. He begins chemo on 7 January and we hope fervently that his treatment will go well.
But no-one is the same again after a cancer diagnosis.
Tsunami death toll
Dad is early on the road. I am an old timer now for what I have.
We all have a lot to deal with.
But it is as if life has an automatic sense of scale and proportion.
As I read, the number of people known to have died in the destruction from Somalia across to Indonesia appears to be 150,000.
Hundreds of thousands more are bound to die in the diseases that follow.
I do not have the life I want. I would love to be able to plan for birthdays and Christmases to come.
My daughter is almost three and I still cannot believe she will share her third birthday with me very soon.
But I have hope and joy in the uncertainty. I have great hope and faith that I have much to achieve before the end.
How different to those hundreds of thousands struggling to stay alive and those who have to bury the dead.
I reached the age of 35 without calamity and only a freak accident of genetics blew me off course.
My life now is hard but it is fulfilling and I am happy in my short term way.
The uncertainty of my life is a blessing. I have plans and hopes.
I used to fear I would never see my son's birth.
Now there will be a fight but it is one which might still see me show up at his first birthday.
How completely different to being in a world where a lack of a warning system meant no-one could be warned in time?
Everyone should have known the tsunami was coming.
Next time they must.
I do not know if science will uncover enough about my cancer to slide the dial just far enough for me.
But we have the technology that could have warned millions about the quake.
Next time people must be given a chance.
Send us your comments using the form below.
My husband fought a rare cancer of the spinal cord for 17 months. He was upbeat all the way, certainly a man of strong faith. He left behind three children ages 4, 8, and 10. Nine years later I can tell you Ivan that his miraculous faith has helped me through these years and I have kept his memory alive for his three kids. They have grown into three wonderful, loving teenagers. He is so proud I know. Keep your positive attitude and fight. Some above has the big picture.
Judy Southern, USA
A very compelling experience exploring the uncertainties in life. Cropping up is the required faith (the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen) that is incumbent for all of us to comfort our individual souls. The effects of the tsunami have been witnessed by all at macroscopic level, the effects of the cancer is at the microscopic level for individual families to witness. Each one of us will experience losses in our lives in due time, the magnitude of these losses makes the difference.
R. Biran, Canada
Don't give up Ivan. Your journal has become a source of inspiration to me. You are helping me put my own life into perspective. I've adopted a new form of self-talk. When I feel overwhelmed by my life I say to myself "Remember Ivan Noble". Your courage in the face of adversity is an inspiration to me. God bless and keep you.
Sheldon Silverman, Canada
Ivan, I have read your diary from the beginning and have been touched by your strength and courage. My husband battles the same cancer as yours and both of you are such amazing strong men. May 2005 be the year where cancer is defeated once and for all. Sending you and your family much love and blessing
Pevinder, Queensland, Australia
Dear Ivan, my daughter recently lost a good friend at age 37 to an aggressive cancer. She like you was a fighter and refused to give in. We had to watch this vibrant girl slowly lose her battle. Science while coming up with many marvellous new treatments was not quick enough for her, but I sincerely hope that it will be for you and that 2005 will be the year that sees it come through for you and your family. Keep fighting.
Patricia Vandeplas, Brussels, Belgium
Ivan, your latest reflections on your illness and the tsunami are above anything else that could be said or written. Keep fighting; we are all on your side. And may 2005 bring you even more joy besides your children's birthdays.
Philippe Dalstein, France
I discovered your diary earlier this year, now I look for it at every opportunity. I became 'involved' with your life, sad at the setbacks, and thrilled with the successes. The birth of your son, the upcoming birthday of your daughter, the illness of your father and the strength of the women in your lives. I just wanted to begin this year with a wish that 2005 is all that you hope for and I hope I will be writing and sending you best wishes on New Year's Day 2006.
Barbara Mckenzie, Canada
I too happened on you story while checking on the tsunami story. Thank you for giving perspective to approach this New Year. All good thoughts and wishes to you and your loved ones.
Denise, Washington state, USA
I share your views about reassessing things. I have a long-term illness with a disease similar to multiple sclerosis, and have had a particularly difficult last year with flare-ups since early summer. On a personal level I hope that next year will be easier for me. But compared with events in Asia I know that I am incredibly lucky just to be alive, safe, warm and hopeful for the future. It certainly does put things in perspective. Best wishes Ivan for the New Year, to you and your family, and to everyone else out there.
Ivan, if only "we" could see life as you do on a daily basis. How precious this "day" is for us all. Pain is the touchstone of growth. Embrace your journey with love.
David Law, Canada
Ivan, I awoke this New Year's Day wanting to read more about the catastrophe abroad all the while feeling helpless to do anything more than the financial donation but found your diary and am touched by the feelings expressed by you and others. I'm not sure a new year's day in past or future will have as much impact on how I live my life as your diary has. I'm truly inspired and my thoughts and prayers are with you.
Ed Martin, USA
The one certainty all of us must face is our eventual death. In some cases it is at a ripe old age, in other cases it is tragically young. But we all take nothing with us and the only thing we leave behind is our memory and, in some cases, the inspiration given to others by courage shown in the face of adversity. By your bravery and honesty in facing your illness, you will inspire others to cope better with whatever affliction they may have. Keep writing, live every day to the full and know that there are lots of us wishing you all the very best for 2005 - and beyond.
Tony Fisher, UK
The Tsunami certainly puts our own troubles in perspective. We lost a daughter to a brain tumour two days before her 12th birthday. We had five months to say goodbye. She planned her own funeral and we know where her remains lie. To lose not one child but a whole family, with possibly no surviving friends for comfort - no home and no hope for the future. Those people really know the meaning of suffering. There MUST be warnings of future natural disasters. So much money is spent on wars and destruction - just a fraction channelled in a different direction could have led to thousands more people having survived.
Maureen , France
Ivan's message was the very first thing I read on New Year's morning 2005. My wife and I had decided that we did not wish to celebrate the New Year last night with the agony and devastation around the world. Ivan's words open a new perspective for me. Every moment of our lives is a precious gift. May his sense and wisdom be an inspiration to so many others who are struggling with despair.
Gopalan Balagopal, USA
I have a slight idea what Ivan is going through as our 25-year-old son died just before Christmas. He had nine years of remission with the first brain tumour but in April it returned in an aggressive form. Nicholas started to keep a diary of his feelings, his highs, his lows, his fear of the dark. He did receive an e-mail from Ivan which gave him great encouragement. Thank you Ivan.
William Long, UK
The news over the last few days reminds us all how valuable and fragile life is. Our time on this planet comes without a guarantee so shouldn't be wasted or squandered.
Ron Askew-Reeves, Spain
I've read your diary over the last 6 months or so but am beginning to understand it with more depth as my beautiful wife was diagnosed was cancer following a biopsy on Christmas Day. I hope your words will continue to enable people to talk about what they are going through and to value the life they have.
Ivan, with your extraordinary strength and ability - you will make your son's first birthday. Have a whopping great cake and help him blow out the candle. Do you have space for a few million of your supporters in the front room on that day?
David Howe, Canada
Ivan, your sense of sanity in difficult times is reassuring. Having been involved in a car crash exactly one year ago I almost lost my entire family. I continue to learn the most precious gift is to enjoy the time we have together. The saddest thing was that it took an accident for me to learn that lesson. Having two children of a similar age to yours I wish you all the very best and hope that whatever 2005 has in store for us all we can all deal with it with your same sense of perspective and enthusiasm for life.
Paul, Congleton, UK
Dear Ivan, thank you for your generosity. As you can read in the messages below, your words simply bring us hope and a new perspective. I'm not a religious person, but I can recognize a God's message in your testimony. Happy new year.
Byron Mello Rosa, Brazil
I read Ivan's online diary and feel proud that there are people who not only fight but inspire others. I hope that Ivan's courage is a source of strength to hundreds of people around the world and we must all learn that with all this money and negative energy being wasted on war and killing, maybe even a fraction of that money put to good use could save millions of lives. I hope humanity wakes up and spends all its energy in the new year for the good of humanity and learn from such disasters that no matter how much we fight for power we are all still vulnerable.
Vikas Gandhi, India
Keep fighting Ivan, hope you have a happy & healthy 2005. All the very best!
I've read your diaries since the beginning and you have shown tremendous strength and courage throughout. You are a true inspiration. All the best for you and your family for the New Year
Wow what an insight into life you have. I know cancer does put a different perspective on our lives. Once a diagnosis is made you either make the best of it or give in. I am glad you are a fighter Ivan your strength of character definitely shows through in your writing. I feel touched that I have been able to access what you are going through. It gives me courage to carry on with my life.
Fiona, Telford Shropshire
Ivan, I stumbled across your online diary whilst searching for information about the dreadful events following the Asian earthquake and subsequent tsunami.
Having read many of your entries I'm left with genuine feelings of admiration. If I were ever to find myself in a similar situation, I hope I would cope with it as well as you have done - but I doubt that would be the case. It's January 1st, the start of a new year. May it be a good one for you and your family - and one in which you continue to defy the odds.
John Ravenscroft, UK
you are simply and inspiration to all the people that read your diary each month. I look forward to reading your diary in January 2006. all the best for 2005.
Leslie Pendlebury-Bowe, Royal Tunbridge Wells, England
Ivan, this is the first time I have seen your diary. What I want to say is keep positive, love and live every day. I have no idea what you are going through, but I have seen my father survive for 22 years when the doctors gave him no hope after a serious of strokes and heart attacks. Trite but true, 'where there is life there is hope'.
I send you and your family love, heartfelt wishes for 2005 and hope for the future.
Mary, Holmfirth, UK
Thank you, Ivan, for the courage you constantly exhibit. You have taught me to number my days, to live each day hoping for the best, in this life we can never fully understand. Hope is the only real thing, and may you have plenty of it for yourself and your family.
Kofi Annoh-Mensah, Ghana