About this Blog

This blog started as an online diary and place for me to rant about annoyances in my family.

However since July it has become a place for me to catalogue and express my views and opinions on the treatment I have recieved following the diagnosis of a potentially cancerous tumor in my bowel.

On 3rd August 2011 I was told that it was cancerous. In April 2012 I was given the all clear.

October 15th 2013 I was diagnosed with peritoneal disease and liver metastases. The cancer was back and this time it is inoperable.

It is a little bit out of date as the NHS doesn't tend to have a WiFi connection in hospital and I can only post when I get home and posts take a while to write.

It is NOT about individuals or the nursing profession. It is about some of the inadequacies in the system and the way the NHS is failing some people.

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Friday, 18 January 2013

Disappointment - a message to Lance Armstrong

I don't tend to hero worship people or have idols but the news today that Lance Armstrong has lied and doped has really hit me hard. 

I read his book in 2011 when I was about to start chemotherapy and I couldn't put it down. I remember being in tears at bits of the book and being really inspired by what he had been through and went on to do. I have since re read it several times and it has had the same effect and when I have been really down it has really inspired me.

Today when I woke and heard the news that Lance Armstrong had admitted doping and lying I was hurt. 

Yes, I think that is the right word. I was hurt. 

  • Hurt that a person who has inspired probably millions of people with his books and his Live Strong Charity, has lied repeatedly, in print about the same thing over and over again.
  • Hurt that he constantly denied it again and again, knowing that he had doped.
  • Hurt by some of his comments in his interview that it was all about levelling the playing field.
I am also cross with myself for feeling like this. I have never met this man, surely what he chose to do with his personal and professional life is none of my business. But he had made money from selling his books and the ideal that cancer does not have to mean you are substandard.

Well, Lance Armstrong, some news for you. Cancer does not make you substandard. You do not need to dope and lie to prove to people that cancer does not change you.

Cancer does change you. It makes you stronger. It makes you live life to the absolute maximum. It does not mean you need to prove yourself repeatedly. You have done that by suffering through chemotherapy or radiotherapy or transplants or surgery or any of the other treatments that are available and given to millions of people on a daily, weekly and monthly basis.

If it was possible I would send my copy of your book back to you and demand a refund. As it is when I can find it, I will probably donate it to charity as it is a complete work of fiction & not a very good one at that.

Thursday, 10 January 2013

Happy New Year

Wow, didn't realise it had been so long since I last posted. So Happy New Year and all that that entails. 
But anyway, growing a baby and recruiting for the preschool kind of got in the way. I have spent a lot of time with Google and it is not as all encompassing as it is supposed to be. 

Lets ignore the preschool thing & talk about the baby.

This time last year (January 2012) I had had 5 maybe 6 sessions of chemo and was feeling quite positive about the fact that it was coming to an end. I was also still feeling slightly like crap and dealing with some of the milder side effects.
Now (January 2013) I have 15 weeks (give or take) until I welcome baby Hayllar number 3. 

Since the moment I was diagnosed I have dreamt about this moment (well actually, since I am amazingly rubbish at being pregnant, the moment that the baby arrives). The moment that I can kick Cancers arse and prove that just because I have had cancer doesn't mean that you can't move on with your life and have new experiences. 

I have been doing a lot of comparing this pregnancy with my other two. I have to say that this has been the easiest in terms of sickness & nausea. When I was pregnant with Isaac I vomited A LOT. There were incidences in petrol stations, on Christmas Day and at almost every other opportunity. I threw up almost every day from the moment I got a positive pregnancy test to the morning after I gave birth. 
When I was pregnant with Imogen the vomiting started with the positive pregnancy test and there were first thing in the morning incidences, but there were also after I had dropped Isaac at the childminders by the side of the road incidents, in the loos at work throughout the day incidents. It did kind of tale off after about 30 weeks, but I still felt pretty rubbish. I can remember my last day at work, before I started maternity leave vomiting because a customers perfume was to strong. 
This time (baby number 3) maybe my sickness/nausea threshold is much higher as I have only been sick about 6 or 8 times. I have felt nauseous and am still suffering from the dreaded heartburn, but have actually thrown up very little. I can't tell you why - maybe my body is more receptive to being pregnant. Maybe the combination of antidepressants that I took through my first and second pregnancies contributed to the nausea. Or maybe having suffered the never ending nausea of chemo and oxaliplatin my body has decided there are definitely worse things to vomit over.

So there you go, If you suffer from terrible morning sickness during pregnancy, have cancer, then chemo & suddenly things won't be so bad anymore.