Tuesday 28 February 2017

Round 29 - You Can't Protect People

Round 29 of chemo has come and gone with no major dramas. Here is me on the way home. I'm wrapped up because I'm back on the chemo that gives me a numb tingling reaction to cold temperatures. You can't see much from the photo but I'm wearing a dress I've had for about 10 years or so. I bought it new but at a massive discount, and I remember when I got it home realising what a cheaply made garment it was, and thinking what a rip-off it would have been at full price. Still, I paid very little for me and it's done me well over the years. It doesn't have pockets but I found I can tuck my chemo bottle in the top over the belt detail quite easily.
I've learnt an awful lot of things since my diagnosis. Or is that a lot of awful things? No, I've learnt a lot of things, and some of them have been bad, but some of them have been good too. Some of them are facts, and some of them are life lessons.

One thing that I only figured out on my trip to the UK in September last year was this. You can't protect people. You can try. But it's not really protecting them. I thought I was protecting people. Then I wondered if I thought I was protecting myself. But actually I was just delaying peoples opportunity to process the truth. Learning this didn't really change my behavior though.

Another thing that only dawned on me recently was that people translate a positive attitude into a positive prognosis. I didn't mean to mislead people. But I may have done so inadvertently.

Since Round 29 I've had a CT scan too. And I've had the results. And I've had a little time to process it. I need more. But that is the thing, isn't it. We all want more time.
Chemo is no longer working. I am out of options. My tumors are very aggressive. It's a hard thing to share. Because I don't like focusing on bad news or potentially upsetting people. But if this news upsets you, well, then the sooner you hear it the better, not sharing it will not protect you from the inevitable.

As I write this I'm still pretty comfortable, and I will write again very soon to let you know what you can do and say at this time, but  I will just quickly say I don't need food or flowers or gifts. If you still really want to spend some money on me you can donate some money to our fundraising page. We still have a lot of appointments to attend and expenses to pay. Our Cancer Fund

Wednesday 1 February 2017

Round 28 - Late

Round 29 is due tomorrow and I still haven't blogged about round 28.

It's a lot of rounds of chemo I've blogged about now, and a lot for you to read about. They all have their own little variations, they are all their own little adventures, and they are all tough. But here we are.

I'm finding it a little hard to blog at the moment for various reasons. One is that the treatment is tough on me and sitting up at my computer and typing and making sense are all just too hard to do in a timely fashion. Then by the time I am feeling better, I want to get on with other things. I've reflected on enough rounds of chemo now, I want to move on and I do (sort of) have a lot to do.

How do I have sort of a lot to do? I don't have much to do compared to a normal busy person. I'm not a normal person anymore. I need a stick to walk short distances and a wheelchair for longer distances. I can't pick things off the floor myself. I can't get out of certain chairs myself. I can't lift heavy things. Even a full bottle of milk is heavy to me now. Everything I do takes ages. Everywhere I go is a procedure. What drugs do I need to take with me, how am I going to move around, what is the access like, how long will I manage for? This is me on a normal day. On bad days I can't even get out of bed.

But the sun rises every day. Every day I get to see my wonderful husband, and I often hear from people I love. If I do get out of bed I see the mountain and trees and birds and clouds out of my window. And that is on a bad day.
'A Bad Day'

At this point I was going to leave talking about Round 28 but it turns out my love of record keeping means I just have to put something down now. If I don't it will be gone forever.

Round 28 almost didn't happen as it turns out my white blood cell is a little high. I thought this sounded like a good thing but it can be a sign that I have an infection. If my body is already fighting an infection, giving it some chemotherapy to contend with is a bit much.

After a second blood test and a thorough consult, I was allowed to go ahead with the chemo.

Round 28 day was a very wet day after a long spell of beautiful sunshine. Our appointment was at 9am which I found a little early but we actually made it on time.
I don't fit into many of my clothes at the moment. Although my arms and legs are stick thin my stomach is very swollen and a lot of things I own are now just too tight. I'm not sure if I've worn this great little stripy green dress to chemo before. I got it while Op shopping with a friend many years ago. It has no pockets but it does have lots of room and good memories.

Today is my best day. My day before chemo. It might be my new blog day too in future.