Newton-John on those death rumours
OLIVIA Newton-John has opened up about the moment she read reports that her stage four cancer was supposedly about to kill her.
"It was a weird feeling. I mean, to read that you're dead - or that you're dying - is a very strange experience," Newton-John told 60 Minutes on Sunday night in a wide-ranging interview.
She made the call to issue a statement to try and end the morbid speculation.
"I decided, well, you've just got to see an end to this because it's going to develop into, you know, the front page of all the tabloids and stuff... I just thought I'd just confront it rather than let this ... Because it was upsetting, it was a really strange feeling and then you think, maybe they know something I don't," she laughed.
The superstar - who lives in the United States - was first diagnosed with breast cancer 27 years ago - she beat it then, and again when the disease reappeared in 2013. But in May 2017 doctors told her it had returned again and this time had spread to her bones.
She told 60 Minutes her doctors had not told her how long she was expected to live.
"No, but if you started reading statistics on what you have, you could get into that. I don't, I don't read statistics... if you believe it, you see. If you believe the statistics, you're going to make them happen.
"If somebody tells you, 'You have six months to live', very possibly you will because you believe that. So for me, psychologically, it's better not to have any ideas of what they expect or what the last person that had what you have lived - so I don't tune in, it's just better for me."
Her daughter Chloe told the program they didn't talk about the cancer often. "We don't know, we don't need to talk about it. If she's having a day where she needs to talk about it, I'm there to listen and to always reassure. I'll never bring it up unless she wants to, do you know what I mean?"
The four-times Grammy winner, who has sold a staggering 100 million records throughout her career, said Chloe had been with her on a couple of doctors' appointments.
"You know, sometimes we'll talk about it a little, but it's not something that we talk about a lot and that's fine. She understands, she has a same kind of instincts that I do.'
But she knew it upset her.
"I know that she gets affected but she's very strong and she doesn't really show me that."
She recalled the treatment she got when the cancer returned in 2017. No one was supposed to find out, so that meant going undercover when she was in hospital.
"No one knew who it was. She snuck around with a beanie on and with a face mask on so other people couldn't see who it was," Professor Jonathan Cebon said.
Asked by 60 Minutes if she was going to beat the disease he said: "So I think the question is what's winning. If winning is to remain strong and to face the challenges and to not allow the disease to defeat your spirit, then she's winning. In terms of the biological effects of the disease, it's in her bones, that requires medical treatment and she's using everything she's got to control the disease and she's got it under control for now.
"So with the help of doctors I think things are going very well in the long term, but stage four breast cancer's not something we see as a curable disease."
Newton-John said she had learned to live with cancer.
"I see it as something in my body that I'm getting rid of. I don't talk about a battle or a war because I think that sets up that kind of feeling in your body of you're battling something strange inside you. I tend ... I- I let it go and tell it to leave and, um, talk to my body to heal itself and don't try to make it that, you know?
"Because that takes up your whole life and your whole being. I kind of have a way, I think, of disassociating and compartmentalising it."
She said otherwise "you become a victim".
"Which I don't want to be and I'm not, or you become, uh, a slave to it and talk about it all the time, which I try not to do either."