odd day



today was so so.  dealing with a close friend, coach, mentor, role model dying, is no walk in the park.  I knew this day was going to come.  I knew what I was getting into when I first met Coach B.  He’s been dealing with this cancer for about a year now.  The first bought he fought with it, was 13 years ago.  Prostate cancer is how it started.  Coach B, or better know as Bassa, is one of the most amazing ‘old timers’ I’ve met in a really long time.  He’s one of those types of people who just tell ya like it is.  And yeah, sometimes the truth hurts people.  Fortunately Coach B was easy for me to impress.  He liked coaching me, and I liked pleasing him.  Then again, I’m not your average, ordinary girl when it comes to hanging with the boys in the gym.  I have the body of a boy, and the mouth of a boy.

I feel honoured that I’m one of the only people allowed to visit Bassa in his last days.  He doesn’t want to deal with most company anymore.  I noticed his toe nails were very long today while we sat in the living room and chatted with the family.  All four of his daughters were there.  I’ve come to see them as sisters.  Can’t recall many other times in my past where I felt so connected with a family so quickly.  The icon of the family unit.   All the grandkids playing together, all the daughters (I haven’t met the one son yet) sitting around with the mum….

Anyway, I drove with two granddaughters to the chemist and bought some finger nail files.  Got back to the house and Bassa had gone to bed.  I felt very humbled and content that Bassa allowed me to file down his toe nails while he slept.  I can’t imagine how frustrating it must be for him to be loosing control of his body, his will and his life so quickly.  At age 73, this man was dead lifting 230 kilos.  He’s only 75 today.  Since we stopped training about 2 months ago, I’ve felt a tad lost in the gym without him.  It’s hard to go through the process of death.  Those stages you pass through; denial, anger, pain/guilt, depression, the upward turn, reconstruction, and finally hope…. they’re all ones you feel.

At the moment, I’m just thankful that I got to work with such an amazing, upstanding, honest, hard working, good natured, charismatic, loving person for a short period of time.



  1. Jay Nugg says:

    Been there dude. It’s like you’re his retainer. He’s one of those people you live to see that they do well for whatever reason.

    Also – I can’t see that video and I don’t want to feel an upward turn. I’m very certain on that.

  2. -mfn says:

    Thank you for sharing your feelings and your experience with Bassa and his family as he approaches death. Losing people that we are close to is a part of life most of us do not speak of openly. In the short time that you have known Bassa you developed a bond that has given him a spark he has clearly appreciated in the last year of his life.

  3. Jay Nugg says:


  4. Kortney says:

    thanks Muffin :) can’t wait to share some video of him doing what he does best. love the book you sent me. it’s beautiful and sits right by my bedside

  5. jodie says:

    as one of the daughters i would like to say thank you x

  6. Kortney says:

    Jodie! I’ve been spelling your name “jody” this entire time. LOL ahhhhhhhhhh you’ve become family to me. great to see you on here. can’t wait to see you this week :) all the girls actually :)

  7. jodie says:

    mum loved the flowers!

  8. jodie says:

    we cant wait to see you too x

  9. jeanette Whytcross says:

    Hi Im Barrys niece im currently living in Fiji, so didn’t get to meet you but have heard about you from my contact with Uncle Barry either via email or phone, glad you got to meet him and share some special moments with him even if it was cutting his toe nails it must be a Conlin thing cos my mum has terrible, thick toe nails too that i can NEVER cut ewwwww!!!!!, he was a special uncle, i lived with them for a little while when i was 5 whilst my mum was in hospital, you met my mum Margaret when you were visiting Uncle Barry in hospital,the Conlins are a very close family and always make you feel part of their family when you walk in the door , its a credit to Aunty Kay and Uncle Barry to have made this close unit and to make others feel a part of it. Hope you dont mind but i have shared your story with friends, Cheers Jeanette

  10. Kortney says:

    I’ve heard about you! I just wrote a blog with your uncle B in mind :) I’m very honored you popped by to say hi. Your Uncle changed up my entire life with his spirit. Reminded me a lot of my Father. Even in the midst of being sick as sick can be, they’d be cracking jokes :) I hope to meet you one day cuzin Jeanette 😉

  11. Kortney says:

    Be home tonight then off again to see the land of kiwis :) when we get back we’ll organize a dinner of some sort :)

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About Me

As you know I’m Kortney with a k. I’ve learned most things in life @ a price. Some lessons were pretty cheap! Conversely, some lessons, well… not-so-much. Over all, I like to sum it all up as such; “I’ve done all the hard work, so you don’t have to!”.

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