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New Article: How much promotion means to me....

I am a very infrequent poster on here but the events of the weekend have prompted me to put into words just how much promotion of my beloved Charlton means to me.

Back in August 2008, the day before the 08-09 season kicked off I was diagnosed with testicular cancer which can as a huge and devastating shock to me. Being a season ticket holder I was still there the next day to see us beat Swansea and hope that a season of success could help me through my difficulties. In the coming months I underwent 2 surgical ops and 3 courses of chemotherapy which meant my trips to the valley were limited (a round trip of 160 miles was a bit too much to do). I looked on in horror as the team crumpled under Pardew. In fact, we did not win a single match during my chemotherapy treatment. The darkest period in my personal life was mirrored by a truly awful period for the Addicks.

My health improved enough to get back to some of the matches later in that season but lets be honest, we all knew we were doomed from Christmas onwards.

The next season saw me taking some tentative but significant steps towards a recovery healthwise. At the same time we began to prosper in League 1 and thoughts of an immediate return to the Championship looked like a possibility. Was this going to be the start of things improving??

Ultimately we fell cruelly short in the play offs and the ongoing financial uncertainty made it a worrying time for us all. It doesn't need me to go into how much of a disaster last season was but needless to say it was another depressing season. Fate would have it that at the same time I had another cancer scare and began to suffer more and more from anxiety and panic attacks.

The start of my road back was to visit a Counsellor, who provided me with fantastic support and guidance to help me through, get me back on track and move forward with my life (he couldn't really help my angst about Charlton though!). This was in February 2011 which of course coincided with the arrival of SCP to breathe new life onto our club.

As we flew to the top of the league at the start of the season, I received an all clear verdict in October from my oncologist. At the same time we were battering teams every week and looked awesome. Even though I never wanted to doubt that we would achieve promotion, the last few weeks have been agony as it seems that the success of my club seems to reflect my own personal situation.

I know full well that life is more important than football but will not be ashamed to admit shedding a tear or two at about 5pm on Saturday. Against Wycombe I will simply be sitting with a satisfied glow and thinkiing that life is tasting pretty sweet once again!

Anyway, apologies for my ramblings....

Come on you addicks!!


  • Great post. well done tom, all the best.
  • RobRob
    edited April 2012
    Yes. Great post Tom. Your cancer journey has mirrored Charlton over the past few years. Now, everything is on the up. :-))
  • Amazing
  • Top post mate.
  • I know full well that life is more important than football but will not be ashamed to admit shedding a tear or two at about 5pm on Saturday. Against Wycombe I will simply be sitting with a satisfied glow and thinkiing that life is tasting pretty sweet once again!

    Anyway, apologies for my ramblings....

    Come on you addicks!!
    Football isn't less important that life. Admittedly the result is but the taking part isn't. A few years ago I went to the funeral of a fellow Addick in Watford. I lurked at the back because I only actually knew him from driving him to home games, I'd never met him before he became too ill to do it himself (AFKA and others on this board will know the story). After the funeral I was amazed to find that people were walking up to me saying "you must be Kevin". It turned out that Charlton had been all he ever talked about and the those fortnightly visits to the Valley were his escape from endless rounds of treatment and therapy.

    I'm delighted for you that your prognosis appears to be good. But don't make apologies for rambling. Plenty of tears have been shed on this board these last 48 hours and I don't mind admitting to a couple for Bob and for Steve.

    Sit back and enjoy it.
  • Well done Tom, puts the weekends events into perspective, sounds like you have had a nightmare scenario on and off the pitch,pleased you've hot the all clear, as have Charlton!
    all the best for the future, hope you get to enjoy the Wycombe game.
  • So it is all your fault. Great to see you are through your own personal hell
  • Keep well and thank you
  • edited April 2012
  • Great post, always nice to see that in amongst some of the pointless bickering on certain threads there are some happy stories.
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  • nice one tom!
  • keep well tom. great story! and you Hugo.
  • Great post - a few decent signings and Powell heading it up, you could be running the marathon this time next year :)
  • Great post jinx Tom !

    Glad to hear you are on the road to recovery, but with that correlation to our fortunes, if you do start to experience any chest tightening, or come out in a tropical rash, can you let us know.

    And then i'll start heavily laying us on Betfair :-)
  • Wow, amazing story. Well done Tom for your perseverance and strength. You of course picked the right team. COYR.
  • @addicktom great story, glad it's worked out for you and us all!
  • @addicktom what an inspiring story......thanks for sharing and good luck for the now 'rosey' future
  • Well done Tom, it puts into perspective some of the trivial things that we tend to moan about.
  • Oh gawd I'm blubbing again! To get an all clear is amazing, you obviously had a premier league oncologist. I'm delighted for you and thank you for sharing your story.
  • Great read, stay strong.
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  • This made me count my blessings , Tom .... of which is that I am so fortunate to be part of the very special Charlton family like yourself.

    Onwards & upwards to both yourself and our beloved Club

  • Fantastic post Tom, glad to hear you are well on the road to recovery.
  • Great post Tom. I know how much i've needed Charlton this season. Most of you on here will know in November our daughter died on the day she was born. Since then i've found that football is more than just 90 minutes on a Saturday, it's all through the week. When i was struggling, the love coming from Charltonlife gave me and Ulrika a big boost, to know that people cared about us. Our common bond is Charlton and through this bond we share in each others joy and despair. Promotion isn't everything, but it certainly helps to fill up the joy bank account.

    Thanks again for your story Tom.
  • More sniffles. Thanks for sharing Tom. Good luck.

    Onwards and upwards

  • Really enjoyed this.

    I had a cheap joke about Pardew being bad for most people's health but your post deserves better.

    Start training for Iron Man....
  • Good luck Tom and a cracking post, our thoughts are with you mate and lets make it Champions as well on Saturday (or Preston) luckily I am at both
  • got goosebumps reading that. Thank you for sharing, amazing - all the best for a healthy future for you and the club!
  • Lovely article, Tom - so pleased both you and CAFC are on the up again!
  • i have been a fan since i was 5 and whats great about "your team " is that they never leave you or you them it is an enduring love ,your parents die,your kids leave home ,your wife/partner might run off with the tennis coach but cafc remain faithful and you to them ,keep the cafc faith tom enjoyed the post and the comments
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