Life’s perfect stories with imperfect endings

Diane Bishop with her two sons. Diane Bishop

Sometimes, life is perfect.

Take the case of Diane Bishop of Newfoundland, who was having a difficult time working because of the toll breast cancer was taking on her body.

But she couldn’t afford to stop working — the government “benefit” is too small.

“I am the sole breadwinner in this household,” she told CBC’s Here & Now program in October. “So if I take my $1,127 and pay my mortgage, then how do we buy groceries? How do we pay normal household bills? We don’t.”

You know what happened next. People started giving her money. That’s the way people are. These are the kind of stories that an entire country rallies around.

She could afford to go to Toronto for a clinical trial to try to stop her cancer from killing her.

“I pretty much got it covered, from the kindness of people who want to help me. And they want to see me fight and they want to see me survive,” she said.

Nice story. Nearly perfect, except for that whole cancer thing.

It gets better.

A month later. She hit the lottery for $1.5 million.

“It’s like this big ball of weight has been lifted off my shoulders,” she said. “The stress is gone, the anxiety of being sick, I know I can’t beat Stage 4 because you’re a ticking time bomb, but it’s given me hope that maybe it can go dormant for awhile … and I can live my life.”

It worked. The CBC reported last month that chemotherapy, which had not worked, was working.

She could be home for Christmas.

“This is the only chemo so far that has worked for me,” said Bishop. “It had taken the fluid out of my lungs. It has shrunk some of the cancer that is in my lung, and it actually healed part of the bone that’s in my leg.”

Perfect? Only to a point.

She died yesterday, the CBC says.