Blimey, is it me or is it getting a tad nippy now as well as being a particularly wet day, today – bank holiday Monday that is.
It’s been about a month since I popped a few thoughts down.
I can’t even remember what I wrote? I thought it would be a good exercise to re-read my past blogs just to see where I’ve been and what I was feeling – I didn’t fancy that.
I’ve tried to get my head around the passage of time in its length, breadth and depth but I know it continues to elude me and, let’s face it, always will – a few weeks have drifted by let’s say.
I had an appointment with the cancer doc yesterday regarding the results of an MRI Scan I had 2 weeks ago – he is happy with the results – So, really good news. He is also very thorough so he wants me to have a 3 month post treatment, more detailed, PET scan which will be mid September to underline the MRI results.
In the here and now I couldn’t wish for a better scenario. It doesn’t mean I’m out of the woods yet by a long shot, but in this moment I’m writing to you now, all is good – I still rest a little uneasy and it doesn’t stop my mind from thinking of all possible scenarios, but I will have to re-adjust my way of thinking as best I can.
Of course, I am dealing with side effects that can be a real daily drag which in turn can get me down, but the flipside is that I am more aware of the when I feel quite ‘normal’ which is all I want to feel really – slowly, slowly.
I had a few questions to fire at the doc some of which just underline my own fears and insecurity – I felt like a hypochondriac! For the doc it’s more clear-cut and routine – the results are positive and that’s that!
One stark, but obvious, reminder over the last few months is that whatever has and is happening to me, I realise that life goes on regardless!
It feels quite raw and cold to surmise life in that way, but it’s refreshingly simple and thank goodness we try to keep moving – sometimes we drop off the radar either expectedly or unexpectedly, and at some point in our life we will disappear from the radar altogether – mother nature and father time’s radar! The earthly plane a mere stepping stone for perhaps another mysterious journey….
So back on earth with my feet firmly on the ground, my movements may well be backward, sideward or moreover I don’t feel as though I’m moving at all but I am, I am.
Old father time and mother nature are there for us although they may not at times appear to be playing very fair…
Life is about putting things in perspective as well as how we perceive each moment along with the emotions and feelings that are attached to that moment. To have a real sense of the ebb and flow of our psyche.
All of a sudden we can find ourselves in a place or space where we never thought we would be, ever, whether good or bad and in a brief moment we are looking at life from a different angle whether we want to or not. We all want life to fall in front of us in a certain way. We work hard at doing the best we can as we live out our lives.
There can be an awful lot of tension lying just underneath the surface that we battle with consciously and unconsciously. Sometimes, we just have to let go, unclench and feel the tension fade, even if it’s for a few vivid and vital moments to put life in a ‘real’ perspective.
So we find ourselves in a place we don’t really want to be, in the shadows let’s say or perhaps afloat at sea and floundering in the doldrums. Where there’s shadow there’s the warmth of sunlight and soon the ocean winds pick you up and up-lift your spirits.
For the last few months the weather has been truly amazing! I have been in the shadows (or let’s say shade) but that’s ok – I’ve been no action man these last few months – 4 months off work to date, an unsettling thought in many ways.
Yep, I have felt pretty sorry for myself at times, frustrated and fed up too! I still do! And that will continue…..I shouldn’t struggle with the inevitable, but be more compassionate with myself.
I am just over 13 stone – at the beginning of the year I was 15 ½ stone. I have wasted a way, I feel. What little bulk I had has been shed. Imagine, you are finding it hard to lose weight and you come across somebody who can’t put on weight – that’s me. The doc said it’s the chemoradiation and it will take time….although I still have times when I don’t have an appetite and I have to go through the motions of eating. And yes, I still don’t find eating particularly pleasurable.
I wake up in the mornings feeling pretty rough sometimes – my throat feels like a hose pipe that’s been left in the desert sun all day making swallowing and the usual things we take for granted, a tad more uncomfortable. I still feel as though I need a spittoon with me and half a gallon of water to keep my mouth from drying up. These are all known side effects of treatment and there are a lot more and sometimes I make sure I am fully aware of what’s what – I don’t want to keep my head buried in the sand for too long. Most of the time, like everyone else you just have to get on with things and manage best you can – that’s all you can do, it’s not ‘perfect’ but that’s just an illusion anyway.
There are moments where I see myself as the six million dollar man, Steve Austin. When I was a kid, I was Steve Austin, I really was. I had the theme tune playing in my head as I ran in slow motion and looked into the distance with my bionic eye and bent metal with my bionic arm – epic memories!
Not sure if Steve had a stomach peg but mine was removed just over a week and half ago which I was so really happy about. I was a little concerned that the surgeons would have to go back down my throat and into my stomach but thankfully, after the nurse suggested I have a light breakfast before coming in to have it taken out because the contents of one’s stomach can literally spray everywhere, it was a simple case of a quick snip and pushing the grommet with some remaining tube back into my stomach where I’m glad to say It left my body a couple of days later – sorted!
The stomach is such an amazing piece of kit – it starts to heal from the inside out straight away. I could drink and eat as normal. Within a few hours the hole begins to seal up and there’d be no way to re-insert the tube within 4-5 hours after the procedure.
I want to be ‘faster’ and ‘stronger’ than I was before, to rebuild myself without the help of bionics sadly, I really do but I’m still a bit of a startled bunny rabbit with some hellish bright lights shining in my face.
I feel like I’ve been slapped in the face and I honestly don’t know why? I’m left with mixed emotions and thoughts all jumbled up. Trying to make sense of what has and is happening is tricky for me sometimes.
My maxim at the beginning of the year was that I don’t expect life to be easy but I’d like it to be simple – make of that what you will for now and I’ll get back to you some time soon.
During the last few months, however, my maxim has been that whatever happens, I’ll deal with it! Sounds quite a tough, matter of fact approach and perhaps in a way it is but it’s just a way of helping set the scene for me. It doesn’t allay my fears and insecurities, but life goes on and we do have to deal with things the best ‘we’ can.
I think it’s about understanding the resources you have around you to tap into and nourish yourself with – I have always struggled with this concept but I need to do this. You have to look after yourself and that is no easy undertaking as we slip and slide amidst the daily trials and tribulations of life.
Take stock, restock and replenish and if necessary have a bloody good clear out.
That’s where I stand at the moment, a little bemused and both over and underwhelmed, simultaneously.
In the weeks ahead I want and need to return to life – as in the words of the great mars bar advert a few years ago – work, rest and play!
Big embrace to all of you who have come this far with me. I hope you’ll continue to listen in, but as I continue to resurface I’ll of course make contact with you all soon, in some shape or form.