Wednesday, 21 October 2009
I went to see my consultant for my follow up appointment this week. First off the tan test...my doctor had told me I wasn't aloud to come back too brown from holiday, i passed! Then we discussed my general health, how I was feeling. Told him that I had felt fine since the last chemotherapy, no sniffles of anything and that I was gradually getting my energy levels back, this week has been really good I have been doing a lot more stuff.
Asked a few questions such as - should I go back to the dentist yet? YES as long as my latest blood results come back normal. Can I get my ear re-pierced? YES go for it. Can I go back to the gym, start horse riding again? YES go back to the gym...but why would you want to go horse riding (my consultant didn't actually say those words...but that was the impression I got!). Should I have the flu vaccine? YES if you are happy to do so.
The gist of it is that the lymphoma could come back at any time, at any point, as aggressive as before or not and it could manifest itself in the same way but it might not, there is just no telling. I basically have to be aware of my own body and any concerns I have I will communicate back to him and we will take it from there.
If all runs smoothly I wont see my doctor until February and then if he is happy, not for another 6 months and then if OK, yearly after that. My consultant was pretty laid back about whether he would scan me again or not, his general practice is to not scan again unless there is cause for concern because it creates unnecessary anxiety. I go along with this now, but may feel different in a years time.
Well it finally fells like a door has closed after Tuesday, it is not over but that part is done. As I have said previously but will say again and again, I really appreciate everyone who has been there, however big or small part I couldn't have done it without you and I THANK YOU.
Now for the next chapter - 'Getting my life back on track!'.
Monday, 19 October 2009
Thursday, 24 September 2009
A BIG THANK YOU to everyone who helped make this a very special occasion and such a huge success. It was great to see so many people come and show their support. We raised over £1200 at the Tea Party and together with donations received we have collected almost £1700 for the Lymphoma Association, an unbelievable amount.
Tuesday, 15 September 2009
Friday, 11 September 2009
So know time for the reflective part. I was thinking about what to write the other night when I couldn't sleep and knew I should have written it down then and there because now I can't think!
Well I think I have passed that bit of the test - chemotherapy that is and getting into remission. There is a lot more still to come and I am sure with that some ups and downs, but lets just hope I can go up and plateau up there for a bit!
It has been a rollar coaster of emotions, feelings and just generally. 'Good' days well as good as they can be, family days, friend days, inspirational days, days I have laughed, cried, frustrated days, anxious days full of what ifs, wanting to run away days and sleepless nights although not many I am a good sleeper and have some wicked little pills if I can't!
I can't say it has been easy but it hasn't been what I would call hard. There have been difficult times, things I have had to deal with I have never thought about before but overall you just have to do it. I think that we are quite resilient as a race, we kinda of deal with whatever is thrown at us and muddle through as best we can. I couldn't let it pass that today is the 8th anniversary of September 11th...there is always someone worst off than you.
Some friends come, some friends go, some deal with it better than others and friendships grow, people you don't expect surprise you and it is a lovely feeling to know they care. Some run away, don't know what to say, hide, I understand that too, wish I could of, but a message simply saying I don't know what to say is better then none at all. Thank you to everyone who has been there, through it all, you have all amazing, made it easier and you all know who you all are - sending some of that love back at ya.
Now got to get my life back on track...but a little bit of celebration time first hey! x
Friday, 4 September 2009
Don't expect to feel miraculously better when its all over but at least I wont have to go to the hospital every two weeks to get pumped full of drugs, and energy/motivation levels should come back and stay back instead of getting knocked back down again. Hopefully once I return from holiday then I can start to get things back to normal, go to the gym, have a curry, go to the cinema, go out to the pub propably, go away for the weekend...just some of the things on my 'To do when I feel better list!'. Its all uncharted territory though so we will have to see.
How slow/fast can a week go, we shall see.
Friday, 28 August 2009
I also had another bit of good news over the past few days...I entered the lymphoma association's photography competition 'Look at Life Differently' and although my photo wasn't in the top twelve entries they want to use my photograph on the back of their calender! This is it below. To see the winning entries click here.
It is funny how things happen, On Monday I changed my 'count down to last chemo' at the bottom of my page to 2 weeks, a day early! From today it really is two weeks...roll on the 11th September now!
Tuesday, 25 August 2009
Friday, 21 August 2009
Friday was a good day too, caught up with some friends and then went out in the evening for Lucie and Ed's leaving due. First time I had been out in the evening for about a month. Friday was definitely a good day!
Tuesday, 11 August 2009
Wednesday, 29 July 2009
Before, after and during shots!
They all did extremely well, Mum and Verity beating Mum's previous years time, coming in at 28.03 minutes and Jill power walked around coming in a little after. People of all ages, fitness levels and for different reasons came over that finish line but hopefully next year I won't be stood watching I will be trying to beat 28.03! We finished the evening off with a BBQ although due to English Summertime had to eat it inside because of the rain, typical!
Monday we went to Cambridge for a bit of retail therapy and I had to get some stuff for my summer holiday before they whipped all the summer stuff out of the shops and put the Autumn stuff in. It was quite a successful trip, managed to get quite a lot of stuff. Had to have an hours sleep in the afternoon though, after only 3 hours of shopping it is not very good.
Tuesday was chemo day - ABVD Cycle 7, Day 1. They had to redo my bloods when I got there because my neutrophills were really low. With chemotherapy it destroys lymphoma cells by preventing all cells from growing and dividing. Your blood count can become temporarily low during treatment because chemotherapy is unable to distinguish between growing cancer cells or normal cells.
It is a particular concern when white bloods cells are low, neutrophills are a type of these. There are several different types of white cells, all of which function in various ways to protect the body from infection. Neutrophils, for example, protect the body by eating microbes and other potentially risky particles. They produce pus and help to alert you to the fact that an infection may be present, by causing pain, swelling and redness. White blood cells are important as they provide the body’s main protection against infection. When the number of white cells, specifically neutrophils, is low, this is known as neutropenia.
With my bloods being redone I had to wait over an hour before the start of treatment. They had a few issues with my port, at the beginning it wasn't behaving, the nurse said that sometimes it can become pressed against the vein wall, because it is such a big vein it is in with a huge blood flow and can become stuck against the wall, so she had to fire it off the vein wall with saline solution! Started chemotherapy before lunchtime, had my 2 injections and then 2 drips. While the drips were going through I watched Broke back Mountain, was a bit bored to be honest!
Because my neutrophills were so low, I had to take a PEG (Neulasta to give it its full name) injection with me to have down at the surgery tomorrow. This should engourage my bone marrow to produce more white blood cells helping me fight infection and hopefully make me feel less tired.
Felt very tired by the end of the day and icky - ABVD Cylce 7, Day 1 - DONE!
Friday, 24 July 2009
Told him about my extreme tiredness. The last couple of weeks I haven't really done a lot at all because I have felt so tired and lethargic (bloody missing a night out tonight because of it, hope you have fun people!). The other afternoon I ended up sleeping for 2 hours in the middle of the afternoon. He said he didn't think it was the lymphoma coming back because I had none of the other symptoms ie. lumps, sweats or itchy skin. He suggested it might be an a cumulative effect of the chemotherapy as I have had my fair dose now, 6 cycles, 12 treatments...only 4 more to go! He said he would take a rain check on it in a couple of weeks.
We ended up being back home by 10.00am as our appointment had been at 8.20am, haven't got up that early for a long time! On the way there we were ahead of the commuters!
Made some fudge, white chocolate and oat biscuits to occupy myself for the rest of the morning. The recipe made a load but they are gorgeous so I am sure we will manage to get through them! Also rang around a few insurance companies about travel insurance, managed to find insure cancer who will hopefully insure me but it wont be cheap and they can only do the paperwork 4 weeks before you travel.
With the travel insurance kind of sorted I booked the holiday. So from the 3rd October to 10th October, Leanne and I will be here...
'Nestled between the Taurus Mountains and the Mediterranean, Kalkan harbour is a sophisticated town combining all your holiday needs – history, culture, entertainment, rest and relaxation. The town boasts an array of sophisticated restaurants, boutique hotels and elegant rooftop bars in the evening, while in the day visitors can choose from a range of nearby beach clubs or vast stretches of white beaches in nearby Patara' - Tapestry Collection Website.
10 weeks Saturday and counting!
Thursday, 23 July 2009
This blog is designed a) as a way to keep those around me informed of my progress and b) provide an insight into living with lymphoma, to help those who have been diagnosed or for people who simply want to find out more.
If this blog just helps one person, it will be worth it. Happy reading :0)
Monday, 20 July 2009
Tuesday, 14 July 2009
Sunday, 12 July 2009
The weekend ended on an adrenaline high. At about 8 ish the phone rang, it was our neighbour saying the field was on fire. Went outside and it was, the sound was immense. The fire brigade had been called and arrived pretty promptly, in fact it wasn't just one fire engine that arrived...three did! The fire wasn't that big but the firemen said if the field hadn't been set aside the whole thing would have gone up - scary. What a way to end the weekend!
Friday, 10 July 2009
Master Mylo after the race.
Cooling off after the race!
And some other shots of the day...