Nicole offers her own experience on how she got through difficult times as help for us all. Nicole went through surgery to remove a malignant tumour on her spine; radiotherapy; a brain haemorrhage; blindness; loss of movement; chemotherapy; more chemotherapy; loss of hearing; more radiotherapy; more surgery. Nicole also: raised thousands of pounds for charity; passed GCSE English after just 6 months' study; gone abseiling; visited New York; had meetings with royalty and government ministers; been the subject of a BBC TV documentary; won numerous national and local awards; and worked for the Teenage Cancer Trust. Talk to the Hand is a contination of Nicole's very full life story; her tips for overcoming setbacks and crises; and makes apparent just why all who were in contact with her found her inspiring, funny and unforgettable.
When Nicole Dryburgh was 11, she was diagnosed with a tumour on her spine and was treated by surgery and radiotherapy, successfully everyone thought. Then in December 2002, she became desperately ill. A brain haemorrhage left her blind, and unable to move and in January 2003, her mother was told that Nicole had only a few weeks to live. But Nicole defied all medical expectations and lived to see her 21st birthday. Sadly, in May 2010, Nicole suffered another brain haemorrhage and passed way the next day. In spite of all the physical difficulties Nicole lived with, including loss of hearing towards the end of her life, Nicole made the most of every moment and accomplished a string of achievements, including writing two books, The Way I See It and Talk to the Hand - Nicole's inspiring memoirs. Probably Nicole's most notable achievement was her determined resolve to raise funds for others. She was a passionate and dynamic fundraiser. Through Nicole's Fund, set up to fund a Teenage Cancer Trust unit at the Royal Marsden Hospital in Surrey, she raised over ?74,000. Prior to this she raised ?43,000 to fund 'Nicole's Sweet', a paediatric neuro-rehabilitation suite at King's College Hospital. Nicole was so successful at this that she was recruited by the Teenage Cancer Trust as a regional fundraiser. Nicole had been short-listed and won numerous awards for her writing and her outstanding fund-raising including Britain's Most Inspiring Fundraiser, Round Table/BBC World Young Citizen, Young People's Choice for the Young Mind Book Award, the Sense Creative Writing Award, a Diana Award and an Anne Frank Award. She had been the subject of a BBC documentary; had meetings with royalty and government ministers; and had passed an English GCSE. Nicole was supported in her life and her fundraising by her mum Jackie, brother Lee and her much loved dogs Daizy and Molly.