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Tuesday, 30 August 2011

31st August

Well, according to the papers, it's official........................................
We have had NO summer this year!
(If I am not mistaken, this year has been no different to the last 2 years,
Lovely in April and then slowly down hill).

Well, what can we do?

Going to see the oncologist tomorrow morning, and my Doctor tomorrow afternoon.
This should be the last time for 3 months.
I expect to be 'signed off', as fit for work, (or as fit as I am ever going to be, anyway).
I will mention my niggles, and 'changes' to my body and bits and pieces, there have been no additions/changes to the list that I wrote in an earlier post, so I guess that this is my 'new normal'.

Oh, I am telling you fibs! My hip joints are getting more troublesome instead of better, but, 'you can't make an omelette with out breaking eggs'.

After all that has happened, I should expect some 'rack and ruin!' Lol!

I will report back tomorrow after the afore mentioned appointments!

Sunday, 28 August 2011

Sunday 28th August

No real change....nagging cramps, not debilitating though, I can still get on and do stuff....just the back ground....nagging!

Weather, cool and changeable.

It was very windy overnight, and my tomatoes, that are in pots, blew over!
Sorted it out this morning, so no harm done.
They are really taking their time in ripening!
They are a decent size, but still very green!

The magpies are teasing Dougal, really funny to watch!

They land on the grass, Dougal approaches in 'stealth mode', the closest flies off and another comes and lands behind him, then off the go again, Dougal approaches in 'stealth mode', magpie flies off and the other lands right behind Dougal!

Saturday, 27 August 2011

Saturday 27th August

Stomach cramps woke me again last night.

I always feel so hot!

That, and cramps, I thought that it was not worth trying to force my self to sleep, so I got up, had some herbal tea, and  sat in the garden for an hour or so.

Went back to bed and slept until 07.00am.

No idea why or what it is, I don't get them all the time. There is a nag there now, but it is not problematic when it is like this.

Well, only a few days before I see the oncologist again, so I will find out what it is, if anything, then.

As I said before, probably just an accumulation of stuff.......keeping control and trying to be strong through all the treatment, learning that I am in remission, and feeling able to relax a little, and it ALL comes out. I suppose something has to give.

Anyway, back to work Monday week, that will bring a little normality back into my life, this will sort out all the aches and pains! Lol!

Probably what I really need, anyway!!!!!

Friday, 26 August 2011

Friday 26th August

I slept well last weird stuff either!
I only got up once in the night for the loo.

Yesterday, I went to Leicester to see Roxanne, and catch up after the 'Honeymoon', and see all the photo's and pick some out to have framed for me!

Leicester Town Hall Square.

I went on the M6 Toll Road. It took just under an hour, there were 2 services on route that I could use if needed. (And they weren't needed! Yay!)

M6 Toll Road.
£5.30 to use this Road

Amazing that it is quicker to get to Leicester than to get to work in the morning.

Or, use this for free....Ordinary M6
Now you can see why it takes longer to get to work than to travel to another County.

I couldn't afford to pay for the toll road every day to get to work, but I do treat myself if I am going South for any other purpose, after all, it is so occasional!

Anyway, we had a little wander around the shops and the market. Had lunch and came home.

I was back in Wolverhampton at 5.00pm. I was exhausted though and did little for the rest of the day!

Not sure that I am going to do very much more today either!
I think that I will just sit and finish reading my book!

Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Thursday 25th August

Slept like a brick all night last night!

Some weird sensations whilst laying just before sleep.
I could hear my own heart, banging so loudly in my chest, my limbs were really heavy,  and I felt unable to move them!
It felt like hot water coursing through my veins.....arms legs and trunk.
Not in my hands feet and head though.
I did feel a bit light headed though.....a bit like being drunk.............

I did feel a bit felt like my whole bed was rocking, so it was probably sea sickness lol!
Don't know how long these sensations lasted, because I fell asleep during them, so, they clearly weren't that bad. In fact, if it wasn't for the nausea, it would have been quite pleasant!

No stomach cramps during the night, but I did get some milder ones before I went to bed.

I feel completely drained this morning, but I am sure that after my shower and after I have put some 'slap' on, I will feel fine.

I imagine that all of these 'symptoms' are quite normal, it is so easy to forget that I have undergone some major treatments, and there are bound to be some effects that linger, or that come on some time after wards.

I want to sleep deeply again tonight....without the nausea though!

It rained all night, so it smells very 'fresh' outside today. It isn't too cold though.

23rd August

Just gone noon now.
I have been up for quite a while, i have sorted the washing and decided what to cook for dinner..........
Still feeling quite sick, so I doubt that I will want much to eat.
I am so tired, probably because I was up during the night with the stomach cramps.
They are still there, but more of a nag than they were last night..........I was expecting an Alien to burst forth, the cramps were that bad! LOL!

Oh well, tonight is another night, I imagine that I will get some sleep then............ feeling all snuggly, just thinking about it!

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

24th August - only by 20 minutes

Here we are again....
Seems like ages ago that I was having trouble sleeping and was up at this hour 'blogging'.

I have been getting stomach cramps and they seem to be getting worse.
This is the first time that they have kept me awake though....(well, since I was undergoing treatment anyway).

I feel sick, that, and the cramps are keeping me awake.

I really don't want to start taking pain killers and sleeping tablets again, not now, after all this time.

No idea at all what it is. Hopefully, it will be short lived, and if not, no worries, I get to see the Oncologist next week. I shall take my list with me to make sure that I mention it.
As I have said on numerous occasions, my memory is really rubbish now, I am surprised that I can still remember my own name and address!!!!!

Well, I am going to have a wander around the garden, it is a beautiful night, and so very peaceful right now.

Hmmmmmm, I think that a nice mug of Ovaline is in order too!

23rd August

I was told that treatment would effect my teeth and gums, which, indeed, it did!

My mouth became sore and loads of stuff.............................

One of my teeth became loose, it is an issue now, I have made a dental appointment, and as usual with dentists, there is a wait......
Now, I have more teeth becoming loose, it wouldn't surprise me if they all fell out soon!
I know one will be gone when I get back from the dentist!

Ho hum, looks like I might end up with dentures!

Bloody Hell!!!!!!!

Monday, 22 August 2011

22nd August

Well, today is my son, Keith's birthday! Happy Birthday Keith!

No more exploding glasses today! Lol!

I feel so....Nowhere..........
I can't explain it really.

OK, I know that I still have cancer. I know that it is in 'remission', (behaving, not growing, just waiting, spying on me...............)

So, is it re-grouping for another attack? Exhausted, and given up the fight? Lulling me into a false sense of security?

Is it looking for other places to set up home? Just slowly infiltrating the rest of my body? In tiny pieces in my blood stream....(as is suspected by the Doctors etc)?

All this not knowing is doing my head in!

It doesn't matter how hard I try to forget, and believe that I am now free of all of this, it just niggles at the back of my mind.

Will I every stop feeling tired? Will my memory return to it's former self?
(Which has always been a bit 'suspect', lol!)
Will this bloody awful buzzing and ringing in my ears ever go away?

Will I ever get rid rid of this persistent headache?

I don't know!!!!! No one knows!!!!!

I am in the 'watchful waiting' stage....Is this a 'forever' thing?

Welcome to uncertainty, to Limbo Land!

Sunday, 21 August 2011

21st August - Now for something completely different.......

Each evening, Mum put a glass of water on the coffee table so that she can remember to take her meds in the morning.....nothing strange about that.........

She uses an ordinary glass, and fills it with tap water....nothing strange there.......

Came down this morning to shattered glass everywhere! Now we are getting strange.....

The base of the glass was still on it's coaster, all shattered, it looked like it would fall to bits if it was touched, well, it didn't...stranger still......

The rest of the glass was in chards and nuggets all over the living room, the settee, chair and coffee table....more strange.......

Stranger still...........nothing was wet!

Do do do do do do..........

The Twilight Zone!!!!!!!!!!

Oh...don't go away yet....I haven't finished!!!!!!

Mum walked down the garden and back, and a beautiful white feather floated from above and landed on the ground, right in front of her!!!!!!!
We actually saw it floating down!

Weird or what??

Saturday, 20 August 2011

20th August

Well, only 2 weeks to go before I go back to work, after 9 months off, this may take some getting used to! Lol!
Being out of the house for 11 hours each day after being at home!
To be honest, it is only the last 3 weeks or so that I have been feeling close to the way I did before this 'journey through cancer'.

I am expecting that the Doctor will advise a phased back to work, which should help.
As I have said before, I have to go and see the Oncologist on Thursday 1st September, then go to the Doctor on Friday 2nd to be 'signed off'.  (I hope).

I am proud to say, that I have been asked to be an 'Ambassador' for a cancer site called 'Navigating Cancer'. (The link to it is in red further down this page on the right).

I am honoured to have been asked.
I hope that I do the 'job' justice, and can help as many people as possible during their diagnosis, treatment and recovery.

Friday, 19 August 2011

19th August - Just a little rant......................

I have been looking at various cancer sites over the past year, and gaining support, and hopefully giving support.
Today, I read a 'discussion' that was most interesting...........
The people were talking about what others have said to them and reactions from others in general.
Well, yes, I have experienced similar, felt very much the same as the cancer patients who had posted, but never did anything about it, despite how the comments and reactions made me feel, so I am going to do it now!

The experiences mentioned are from people in face to face interactions, ones that know me very well, ones that I see in town, in my local area and the flesh, even family!

Some comments to me..........

  • "I have looked your cancer up on the are going to have to be very lucky to survive it...."
  • "Oh, my Aunty went through the same as you last year, she died though..."
  • "You look too well to have cancer, are you sure that you aren't fibbing to me?"
  • "Oh well, never mind, could be worse, could be me with!"
Of course, I try to be as positive as I can for as much of the time as I can.....there are the odd occasions when I am not positive...........I defy any one, with or without cancer to be positive ALL OF THE TIME!
So....telling me to be positive on the odd occasion when I am not makes me want to punch the person that has said it!

These are just some examples of what has been said to me..............

The other thing that I have noticed is, some people who would speak to me regularly, even seek me out, avoid me like the plague, have even crossed to road to avoid speaking to me.............

People who have never spoken to me seek me out and want the gruesome details...they, of course, are life's 'ambulance chasers'.

Well, now I have got that off of my chest I want to say that it is easier not to address these issues as they arise, because conflict, challenges and bad atmospheres are the last thing that we need.

Why oh why, is it us who think about not offending the people who say and do these things...................................... 

When this is how we feel!

We smile sweetly, and forgive......
For they no not what they do..........................

Thursday, 18 August 2011

18th August

Well, I have been feeling a bit 'down' for the last couple of days. No idea why.
I wasn't feeling unwell in any way, just a bit low.

But, Today.........................

I feel good!

No rhyme or reasoning behind it that I can see, but all is well with the world today, so far.................

This is a video of James Brown...great, have a little look, 'cos this is how I feel today!

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

16th August

Well, nothing much to report.
I have to go and see my Oncologist again on first of September.
This, I think may be the last time for 3 months.
We are now in the 'watchful waiting' period.
Anyway, I have compiled a list of things that I want to mention, I am sure that I will be asked about how I am feeling, what side effects are still hanging on etc.
My memory has never been particularly good, as I have mentioned before, and it is worse now.........
I have been making a list and adding or deleting things as required. This, I will take and share with her.
(There are a couple of things on it that I have meant to mention at previous appointments, but forgot to do so).

Now list so far....(which I am sure will change as the days and weeks pass), but here it is for the NOW!

How I feel now – August 2011

Side effects/symptoms
  • ·        Painful joints, especially hips and knees.
  • ·        Tinnitus. (No improvement).
  • ·        Hot sweats.
  • ·        Feeling cold some times when no one else does.
  • ·        Itchy spots to back, chest and midriff.
  • ·        Headaches.
  • ·        Impaired vision.
  • ·        Sore mouth and loose tooth.
  • ·        Lethargy.
  • ·        Easily tired generally, but especially after working.
  • ·        Loosing weight…(but that is good).
  • ·        Short tempered.
  • ·        Sore throat.
  • ·        Stomach cramps, (upper abdomen).
  • ·        Feel sick sometimes.
  • ·        Some neuropathy in both feet.
  • ·        Palpitations.
  • ·        Occasional Dizziness.
Non of the above are causing too many problems, and do not effect my life and stuff that has to be done, I may be a bit slower, but all in all, no real issues.

The 1st September should be the end, (other than the regular 3 monthly check ups and the ongoing 'watchful waiting!'

Monday, 15 August 2011

Navigating Cancer

Dashboard - Navigating Cancer

This is a great place to go if you need support and help, if you are a survivor, undergoing treatment, carer, family member...just have a look around, it may help!

Friday, 12 August 2011

Saturday 13th August

I think that I will take a trip into town today...ON MY OWN!

The only time that I have been into town on my own since I was diagnosed, is Thursday just gone, I was in and out in less than 1 hour!

Whilst there I noticed that a Cafe that I used every Saturday before diagnoses, had closed down.
This, in turn, reminded me of a man that I saw every Saturday...............................

Ooooo, about 4-5 years ago, I always saw this man, he would be sitting on the pavement by the cafe, begging. He didn't look very well.
I find it difficult to assess people's ages, but I would say that he was in his twenties.
Anyway, I would always give him some change. Over a few months, I started to chat with him and  buy him a cup of tea, in fact, the cafe owner would already have a coffee and a tea set up on the counter by the time I got in there! Lol!

Shortly after that, he started to sell the 'Big Issue'.

As time went on, he started to look a lot better, a bit more healthy.

On dry days, I would buy a coffee for me  and a tea for him, we would sit on some steps chatting. Sometimes we would sit at a table, if the cafe had put their tables and chairs outside.

I never knew his name, but I Learned that this man had a brother, his brother had a dog, and this man would bring the dog out sometimes too. He was a very 'robust' Pit Bull. A lovely animal.
The man had some issues with his leg, and some times it would be bandaged and he would be limping.

The thing that I noticed and admired was, if he saw a friend of his, who was also selling the 'Big Issue' in another part of town, he would give him half of the cup of tea that I had bought him, neither of the men would allow me to buy an extra cup so that they could have a cup each........

The last time I saw him, he was looking a bit unwell again, this was just before or around Christmas. Due to many reasons, I haven't been into town on a Saturday in the last 9 months or so, so I haven't seen him.

I intend to go into town today, at the time that I used to go and see if he is still around.....I would be very interested in seeing how he  is getting on  now.

He may have moved 'spots' as the cafe has closed down, but I don't see why, because the 'foot fall' in that area wont have changed because it is one of the busy entrances to the shopping mall.

Oh well, I hope that I see him to catch up, if not, I wish him well........................

This picture is NOT him, but you get the idea!

12th August

I had my brain scan this morning.....
Totally different to the last one.
I had to have my head clamped in position, wear ear defenders and had this cage thing put over my head.
I had to strip off completely too this time, but I didn't last time.
The machine was different as well.

The department that I went to was called,
'Nuclear Imaging'.
Just plain 'ol Radiography last time.

Anyway, I am sure that there is no problem and that I am well.
The only thing that needs to heal and clear up is the infection that I have in the internal open radiotherapy burns.

Tinnitus, tiredness, headaches and poor memory are things that will be with me for some considerable time to come.

But, Hey.......................
Small price to pay for REMISSION!

I don't think that there is any problem with my brain, but I think that the Doctor wanted me to have the scan because of the headaches that I am getting, and because I can't remember simple words some times.
My memory is pretty bad now, although, it wasn't great before!

I am really pleased that I had ear defenders because the thing was bloody noisy!

I need to see the oncologist again on 1st September.

Tuesday, 9 August 2011

Wednesday 10th August

The riots here are a bit of a pain in the bum, although to be fair, we have not been directly effected. I feel so sorry for the businesses that are being looted, particularly the small ones, all their hard work and money............................
The shops here took precautions by removing their 'lootables' from the shop windows and closing early last evening. Don't know how successful that has been yet.

I am beginning to believe that there is no 'cause' to these is just a poor excuse to be violent and to loot the shops....any sympathy that I may have had is now long gone!

Back to cancer and remission...........

How do I feel?
Quite good actually!

I have little to no appetite, so I am not eating much, for example, all I have yesterday was a bowl of strawberries, the day before, egg on toast, and the day before that, I think that I had a bowl of cornflakes......
Doesn't seem to be doing me any harm..........
Can't really face a meal.........

Nausea, still there on and off, no pattern to it, just happens, in fact, I am closer to being sick now, than I was when I was having chemo...complete madness!!

Still there, no change.

Hip joints still hurt.

Still have the infection in my radiotherapy burns that have not healed yet...I am taking the medication, and it isn't causing me any grief really.......

Getting tired easily and quickly, yep....still there.

Despite the above, I am feeling good, and I am not worried about my health at all in any way!

I have an appointment on Friday for the brain scan, as I said, I am not concerned about that at all........

I have an appointment on 1st September to see the Oncologist again.

Back to work 5th September.

I am looking forward to going back to work, but I am not looking forward to the commute there and back...I am out of the house for 11 hours each day in total.
Not at all inspiring!
Bloody M6!
(Before you ask....yes, I have tried other routes, just as bad).

So.....onward and upward, and get on with my life!
Will keep posting as and when I have something to say.

Tuesday 9th August

Stories, as requested and promised!
Well, Scotland is quite away from here, so we decided to travel up nice and slowly, stopping at all the services on the way. (I still need to use the facilities on a very regular basis). Too much information, I know!

Anyway, Roxanne and her best friend and Maid of Honour, Sapphire were travelling from Leicester, (which is in the East Midlands). Derek and I were travelling from Wolverhampton, (which is in the West Midlands). We are going to Scotland as mentioned, which is North).
M6 Motorway, most direct, straight through to Carlisle, connects to Leicester via M69, and Wolverhampton via A449.....sorted!

We arranged to meet up at one of the service stations. The agreement was that, as I was leaving first, so that I could have a nice little pootle up there, I would select the service station, ring Roxanne when we were there to let her know which one it was.
I decided to stop at Stafford Services.
I phoned Roxanne, and she told me that they would be there in about 20 minutes.
35 minutes later, I called her again.
I asked where she was. Roxanne gave me the name of a service station that they had just passed. ( I had never heard of it), so I asked which junction she had just passed. I heard a little voice in the background, Sapphire was driving....she shouted, not sure, they are not easy to see on the A1 motorway!

So.................both on separate Motorways.... I would have still been there waiting!!!!!! Communication clearly failed us, because there wasn't any!!!!

Well, he was not very well, his foot had swollen like a balloon, looks like gout to me, but Derek said that it isn't.................
Anyway, when we got to the Hotel in Scotland, (Roxanne and Sapphire turned up about 30 minutes after us), Derek remained in the Hotel room with his foot up......I was having a problem trying to see to his needs and ensuring that Roxanne and the wedding plans were all sorted, so, poor old Derek had to fend for himself....apart from sleeping, he stayed there in the room until we travelled to the venue for the Ceremony at 2.00pm. He stayed for the whole ceremony, had a chat with my brother Philip and sister in law Dawn, then he went and sat in the car until 5.30, which was after we had finished and cleared up!

This isn't actually Derek's foot, but this is what it looks like!

Roxanne and Tom drove to Glasgow airport, where they stayed in a hotel over night, and then flew to Sweden the following morning for their Honeymoon.


Monday, 8 August 2011

Monday 8th August - Wedding pics

This is part of the Castle were the ceremony took place.

A bit more of it.

Another view, (no idea who the person in shot is, these pictures were taken in the morning before the wedding, so I imagine that it is a 'sight see-er)

My son Keith and his girlfriend Sarah.

My brother Philip and my sister in law, Dawn.

Thomas, the Groom and 'Pembo', the Best Man.

Tom and Roxanne 'signing' the register.

Bride and Groom.

The actual ceremony.... Sapphire, the Maid of Honour, Roxanne and Tom, Pembo, the Best Man.......

Tom and Roxanne

Tom, Roxanne in front of the lovely Castle!

This is the area that the ceremony took place in, and this is also where the guests were during the proceedings.

As yoy can see, these are pictures that I took myself, there will be more coming later, some taken by other guests and some taken by the professional photographer....either way, they will be a bit better than mine! lol!

Wednesday, 3 August 2011

3rd August

Well, just to let you know that I wont be posting again before 8th August, and that will be with pics from the wedding.

Derek is back at work...Yay!
Today and tomorrow, he is doing one job, travelling to Scotland on Friday for the wedding, and the he starts back at his old job on Monday!

I have things to do, people to see and places to go now...,still doing last minute stuff!

I want to thank each and every one of you for reading and supporting me through out these 10 or so months.
I hope that it has been helpful to you too.

I will keep posting with my progress and results of scans and check-ups etc.
It is unlikely that I will have something to say everyday...but I will continue with it.

Thank you all once again!


Monday, 1 August 2011

1st August - after Hospital Appointment

I am officially in remission!

May even have a little drink myself later.....the first in about 5 years!

The oncologist examined me and said that I have not yet healed internally from the radiotherapy. On top of this, I have an infection in the wounds.
Not to worry though, because she wrote a prescription and it should all be sorted soon.

I have to have another scan on my head/brain, this will be done within 4 weeks and then I have to go back to see the oncologist.
(Not sure why exactly, especially as I had one not too long ago).
I am not concerned though, because I am sure that they won't find anything.
Well, hopefully they will find a! (But nothing else).

I will have to go to be 'checked' at the hospital every 3 months indefinitely.
This is because I have a very rare cancer in a very rare place...........Well, the place isn't rare...most, if not all women have such a place....but to have a cancer in that place is rare, and the cancer is rare, regardless where it is!
......Something like that anyway!
I was so excited to hear 'remission'. I didn't pay too much attention to anything else! Lol!