The End.

The End.  This is it now and I find myself slightly lost in how to write about the end. I've done the introduction and taken you through a twisting and turning plot; and I know the story ends because all of ours do ultimately, but how does one write that final chapter? How does one process that it is the final chapter?  I got told a couple of weeks ago. In fact, I got told I may only have a couple of weeks to live and as usual I've stubbornly disproven that theory. I'm no fool though, I understand my life is now being measured in weeks; and not necessarily that many of them. In fairness I almost died (I'm not exaggerating) about two months ago, so in a weird way I'm still one up. I have a very serious infection in my liver which sent me into septic shock; the intensive care unit; and a very blunt conversation of all the things that could happen that they wouldn't resuscitate me from. I have never been so terrified in my life and I experienced a new level of pain

Sometimes it's just about getting on with it

I love an inspirational quote. I'm a bit of a sucker for a nice little line to pick up my mood. As some of you may have noticed, Alice in Wonderland is a particular favourite of mine. However there's one line I see quite regularly that I just can't abide - the "This too shall pass" phenomenon. Something about this one really winds me up. I think it's the naivety of it. The truth is, not everything does pass. I got diagnosed with cancer over three years ago. Initially I thought I would take chemotherapy pills for two years and then I'd be done. It would pass. That was naive. Once you've been diagnosed with cancer it doesn't pass. Even if you recover and get the all clear, it doesn't pass. You get to live with the knowledge that you can be attacked from within your body, without knowledge, at any time. I would say for the majority of people who have had or have cancer, you live with a heightened suspicion of everything you feel. It wasn't

An update from the silence

On Saturday I posted a photo of me smiling in the hospital. Saturday was one of the first times I felt like smiling while I was in the hospital. Things haven't really improved but they're semi-controlled and I had decided I just needed to have a good day. I've actually had a really rubbish month. While the world has been falling apart with the Covid-19 threat, my world has been doing it's usual kind of cancer related falling apart as well. I attempted to go into isolation long before we were told to as a country. I'm already high risk thanks to a lung tumour and the medication I'm on so I intended to hide myself away in my safe little house and we introduced a whole lot of extra levels of germ control to stop anything getting in. Unfortunately my body had ideas other than isolation. My amazing drug that has been keeping me healthy (based on my low standards) appears to have made my immune system a little confused and it is now attacking my liver. That'

The truth in the smile

I posted this photo from the plane as we returned back from Sydney on Friday. I was smiling; and that was very genuine. I was relieved and thrilled, and a little stunned, to hear the word stable on Wednesday. It was a feeling I could not have imagined before this diagnosis. I regularly share pictures of me smiling because I am generally pretty happy to be alive. I'd like to share a little behind the build up to this most recent smile. In December I got my usual pre-Christmas bad news. I love Christmas and all the fun, celebration and family time that comes with it. Cancer appears to be pretty determined to challenge this love because, instead of coal in my stocking, which actually seems pretty appealing these days, it gifts me shitty news each pre-Christmas appointment. It started in Christmas 2016 (pre-diagnosis) when I found out my liver wasn't functioning properly. Christmas 2017 it gifted me some new tumours in my newly regrown liver and a very difficult decision on w

Just a Warrior geeking about language

When I was learning my dodgy version of Spanish I found a phrase I really connected with. "Tener ganas" was more than it's loose translation of to want something. It was like a desire, a feeling inside of craving a thing. At least that's how it was described to me. I loved it. I didn't just want to go to the pool when it was 38 degrees, I craved it. I didn't just want  to go out dancing, I desired it. My friend and I loved it so much we incorporated it into our bastardised Spanglish vocabulary with sentences like "I've got ganas to...". It really meant more to us than to just want. Language is a wonderful thing. I'm a geek and enjoy the affect language can have when it comes to communicating a point or painting a colourful story. So, yup, I'm blogging about language today. Geek away. As you probably know I inadvertently joined the cancer club almost three years ago now. It was a giant oops in my life but here I am in a club nobody ev

Rare Cancer Day.....maybe

It was Rare Cancer Day this month. October the first. At least, I read it was but it seems rare cancer doesn't even get an official date for awareness. It misses out again. I'm acknowledging this potential date of Rare Cancer Awareness anyway. I'm acknowledging it because it's bloody important that we talk about it. I've lost track of how many times I've had to explain that my boobs are one of the few parts of my body still perfectly in tact. When I say cancer, the crowds shout “breast”. Now I love that there is a great awareness that breast cancer is a risk. Hopefully that means all the lovely ladies out there are staying conscious and checking any lumps. There are several women I am very glad had been doing just that and are still around to keep me company. My point is that as a 30-something women it's assumed that my breasts were the guilty party. That was not the case. Macmillan (the number one point of reference for cancer in the UK) states that a

Sometimes hope is all I've got

I got another good scan result recently. That's the third one in a row. I'm nervous to say this because I don't want to jinx it but that's an all time record in the "journey" that is this cancer battle I'm doing. I've smashed my previous record, of one, out the park. And by one I don't mean one in a row; I mean one in the previous two years. Before this year I'd had one, only one, good scan result from all the scans I'd had. Somehow, even though the trend had been a series of bad results, I remained hopeful every single time. Every time I hoped I would be told the tumours were shrinking, that they were responding to the treatment, but that wasn't the case. Scans actually seemed to mean the three monthly meeting to consider the next treatment step. Except that one good scan I had. Before that one I told my oncologist that I knew the tumours had responded to the radiotherapy on my liver. I don't know if I really did know or if that