Normal Service will be resumed shortly…

I am alive! Go me!

Chemo is all over, thank fuck. I have never in my life been so tired.

Radiotherapy is now all over. I have a left boob that looks like a tomato and itches like crazy. Not complaining, just sayin…

Now on Anastrozole for the next five years. Bonus – all drugs for the next five years are FREE! Yay the NHS! I thought it would just be the cancer drugs that I would get free but no – anything prescribed in the next five years I get for nothing (well, I get from the money I have already paid in taxes and National Insurance cos after all nothing in life is really free!)

Gotta get a hair cut. I know this may seem odd, given most of it is only 1/2″ long, but – most of my hair fell out, but not all. So some is 1/2″ and some is 1/4″. I have waves. It looks shingled. Do Not Like. So gonna get someone to buzz it shorter.

Brain freeze is wearing off, and summer (with subsequent rise in feel-goodness) is on its way. I feel happy and glad and grateful. Life is good, and I am gonna make it stay that way!

True Words and A Small Rant – it’s been a bad day!

This poster should appear in every doctors office in the world.

People. Did your mother not teach you – COVER YOUR MOUTH WHEN YOU FUCKING COUGH. Coughs and Sneezes spread Diseases: Catch them in your Hankerchiefs.

Disease Zombies I called them, when I went to see Dave Gorman. And I was right. Zombies cos they just do not think. I had the bus journey from hell today, with a woman who sneezed right in my face – I felt the fucking droplets. And bitch did not even apologise.

I will let you know how it turns out, but I already feel sneezy – though I do sincerely hope that is Hypochondria, not Cold Germs.

Chemo Session #3

It is odd, watching the two huge syringes full of red liquid that later turns my wee red getting slowly injected into my port. A genius, that Rommel. I will get pictures next time.

Head hair is now almost totally gone. I got a buzzcut (grade 2) when it started falling out, as I really hated waking up with hair in my mouth! So now I have some short hairs, and some really short hair where it appears to be growing back. I was looking forward to bald, instead I have soft and fuzzy.

Losing the pubes was odd. And I have smooth armpits and legs for the first time ever in my life! I am not a hairy person – genetics have blessed me with not much body hair – so I have never, in my life, shaved. I bleach my leg hair in winter, so they don’t show under tights so badly – at least I did, when I wore tights! – and, having nicely shaped non-bushy eyebrows, watching my mother cry while she plucked hers saved me from a life of eyebrow plucking servitude. OK, now I realise it was just her eyes watering from the pain, but really, does it matter? Why, when I have been lucky enough not to need to, should I do that to myself!

I really should have not said I was not getting side effects. Now I feel nauseous and can’t find my Drug Sheet. Waiting for Daughter to come home – she put all the details in a spread sheet. I know I only have three days worth of drugs, but it’s the When and Which I am having trouble with.

Going to Declutter the Bedroom this weekend – rather, Husband is going to shall take photos of the before and after.

Christmas Dinner is now sorted planned. Pheasant breasts, braised/casseroled in some form of alcohol, bacon-wrapped sausage wheels, caulflower & broccolli cheese (shit, how do you spell brocolli!), carrot & swede mash and I am trying for Roast Parsnips. plus wine-cooked pears with cream, mince pies and no pudding or cake. Going to order the pheasant from our christmas butcher later today.

 

Blood Test this Morning

Chemo on Friday, unless the tests say not.

Last night was a visit to my oncologist, with measurement of tumor shrinkage included. And thankfully it IS shrinking! So the chemo is working well, and I don’t need to change it. Which is good, as (apart from having no hair and being more tired than I have even been in my life) I am having no problem with this at all.

But the tiredness, that is killing!

Other things done recently – went to see Dave Gorman at the HMV Apollo, formerly the Hammersmith Apollo. Normally, we would trek there on the tube – straightforward enough, walk to Rayners Lane or catch the bus to South Harrow, get the Picadilly line to Hammersmith, walk to the venue, reverse coming home, journey time 50 minutes.

However, Husband decided that the theatre was going to be full of disease zombies who were just out to make me ill, and that the tube would be even fuller of disease zombies getting their germs right in my face, so he would drive us there.

Wow. Having the underground so easily available does make one forget that not ALL of London is miles away! 25 minutes, door to door (and we managed to park right outside the theatre, under the flyover!) – putting the Apollo much higher on List of Venues I Go To With Husband!

I was going to put a video of Dave Gorman doing Postcard, and another of Jay Foreman, support act at Hammersmith, here for your edification – but WordPress seems to not allow video linking anymore.

Chemo #2

Second course of chemo has now been done. Back to sleeping 12 hours a night! Hair loss almost complete – I have a head that looks fuzzy and rather nekkid.  Also got a mouth ulcer – was hoping to skip that particular side effect!

Otherwise life is fine. I am reading a lot (when I am actually awake, anyway!), sleeping a great deal and not suffering any loss of appetite. Which I actually wanted. I mean, I am four stone overweight – cancer treatment is supposed to make you bald and skinny, innit? Not in my case – I have had no change in taste and have an increased appetite – which Daughter says is good and that I will have lots of reserve to fight the cancer with – I suppose she is right. Damn her!

She did ask what I intended to do on my birthday – Sleep, I told her, Sleep and maybe get a little drunk.

Chemo# Again

Not that I have had more chemo. Just – I sort of thought the tiredness would sneak up on me, that I would not be exhausted from Day Four, more like Chemo Session #2, or (if really lucky!) #3!

No.

Last night was Diwali – Festival of Light. Lights and Firecrackers to drive away evil spirits. Round my house was like a war zone – albeit a friendly-fire type of war zone, but soooo noisy and sooooo many fireworks.

Slept through the effing lot, I did.

I woke up a couple of times, to go to the toilet, otherwise solid zzzzzzz’s from 8.15 pm to 7.00 am.

Jeeez. How am I ever gonna manage to do my job?

Chemo #1

First chemo treatment yesterday. And it went well, thanks.

The port worked well, though I was a little daunted when Rommel (yes, my chemo doctor is named after a famous Nazi – he is such a nice man – my chemo doctor, that is, not the other guy!) walked up with a blue plastic disc in his hand with what looked, to me, like a six inch needle sticking out the bottom.

The port itself is a little plastic disc, fitted just under the skin, with a vein running through it. And the needle is not really six inches long. It is, of course, designed to fit exactly into the port, piercing the top of the vein and not reaching the bottom.

“Take a deep breath” said Rommel (which he pronounces Ro-mel, accent on second syllable – well, you would, wouldn’t you!).

So I did.

And it went in perfectly, no pain (that could have something to do with the local I get to apply myself an hour before treatment, of course). And all flowed well.

The skill of Rommel becomes apparent when administering the drugs.

First is a saline flush. Then anti-vomit meds via the saline solution.

Then it is hand-injecting a large amount of one drug (because I am a large lady) into the line, rather than the bag. And this has to be done at a slow, steady rate to avoid damaging the vein and causing leaking and damage of surrounding flesh. And it was handled wonderfully. Twice. Because I am a Large Lady and needed Two large syringes.

Then another flush.

Then another drug.

I could give you all the drug names, as I have a very nifty little Chemotherapy Record Book to carry around with me, along with a card showing I have a port in my chest, but I am too tired.

Next thing – how I cope with hair loss! I did consider shaving it all off BEFORE it falls out, but think maybe just a super-short cut instead, so it looks less messy while falling out. Thoughts, anyone?