Sunday 26th July
It’s near to curfew time and Rebecca has returned from Josh’s. She enjoys the warmed up Sunday dinner I had saved for her. We normally plan curfew time entertainment and tonight after hours of peace and quiet, we all decide that a funny film is a good idea. Light hearted fun to end the day with. Rebecca browses Netflix and comes across a film with David Tennant in it. Now my daughter would watch paint dry if he was in it and I’m not joking. The film is called “What we did on our summer holiday”, we watched the trailer and it had great reviews plus some good actors, Billy Connolly amongst many and it was a BBC film so what could go wrong hey. So countdown to family film time starts.
Steve clears away the dinner and full of food and chemo tablets I send my daily text to Richard who is still in Bavaria. My text as normal is ‘how are you? what you up to? Miss and love you.’ His reply is sad as they have been to a concentration camp and he has been so moved by what he learnt and the images he saw. Now this camp was called Dachua and it was the first concentration camp opened by Himmler. Run by the SS as a torture and death camp over 200,000 people died there. Like most things in life you may have heard about this camps or seen films about them but to see them, to feel the sadness there is indescribable. Steve and I visited Auschwitz and it’s somewhere that I think everyone should go to. Not to everyone’s taste I get that but so moving to actually see it. So after a brief text exchange it’s agreed that I finally do have something for my ‘bucket list’ and that is to go with Richard and Rebecca to Auschwitz. When we hear or read about racism I always think about what I saw at Auschwitz as that’s extreme racism for you granted but to not accept people for who they are regardless of creed, race, colour or religion is just not acceptable to me. Also we should never forget the freedoms we have today are due to the sacrifices of those in WWII. As a small child my grandad always used to say to me “if it wasn’t for me and men like me you would all to speaking German!” I never really understood what he was talking about but I did sadly in later life.
I’m also on messenger to Karen who has had a day on the loo, our messages are funny as we discuss how sore her bum is and that maybe she should move the telly into her loo as she can’t move off it for very long. I say that I’ll ask Mother Theresa for an extra prayer for her bum. Karen asks if she can pray for it to be more pert too or is this an abuse of prayer power? I message MT Rita with Karen’s requests for a non-sore but pert bum prayer and sadly MT Rita confirms that this would be an abuse of prayer power so it’s exercise for Karen if you want that pert bum, if you can ever gets off the loo. I’m going to use MT Rita from now on for Rita as typing Mother Theresa every time is just too long.
So film on and we settle down with chocolates and a nice glass of red wine. Within the first few minutes I realise that this film is actually about the grandfather of the family is dying with terminal cancer! Oh no I thought this is not going to be good but actually it was a great film and we all enjoyed it.
Monday 27th July
I wake up at 6 am in pain. The swelling/tumour in my groin that has decided to become swollen enough that you can see and feel it. It feels so hot like it’s burning inside. The lovely Sunday dinner where I foolishly included asparagus, cauliflower cheese and leeks was causing stomach cramps too. See healthy food is not good for you and you finally have maybe twigged hidden meaning of the title post link too. Teeth cleaned I head downstairs for my usual 1/2 biscuit, fag and coffee once the animals are fed. But I then start to gag, and gag and gag and gag, now as my stomach is empty I have nothing to bring up but the retching won’t stop. Cramps continue until I can make it to the loo. Early mornings are never pleasant and I’m glad to be on my own to cope with it. Gagging finally stops and I manage to feed the cat, chemo and cat food in the mornings are just not funny.
Other of the lovely side effects that have started are the peeling of the skin on my hands. I have thumb print recognition on my iPhone to unlock it and this is becoming a problem and I may even have to change the security settings as now even my phone doesn’t recognise me sometimes. I have a sore in the corner of my mouth and my nails are just shockingly brittle but at least I have still got my hair as Karen is experiencing it thinning as it falls out.
I work on my project work but I have to keep closing my eyes as to concentrate for about 50 minutes is all I can manage without stopping. In the afternoon Rebecca goes to attend her therapy session and I head off to the Hospice.
I have no idea what to expect apart from maybe the smell of cabbage and bleach with the distant noise of bingo being played in the background. I was very wrong indeed. I arrived on time and I did see two very elderly people being manuevred out to the waiting mini bus, loved ones and nurses to assist. Everyone said hello and was very welcoming. I didn’t see the Irish lady until I was about to be shown into see Sharon. I couldn’t resist telling her that I knew the meaning to the phrase ‘for the love of a lamb’ or whatever it was due to MT Rita and her now saint like thread throughout my blog, we had a quick laugh and then I was taken to Sharon.
The hospice offers support for me on my own or any of us as a family. We talked through my short journey with cancer and on the advice of Jo this morning via a text I did tell Sharon about my blog and I have given her the website details. She now knows all about 50 shades of chemo and loved the analogy of the ‘all you can eat buffet of life being reduced down to making your own sandwiches’. I was shocked that I spent an hour there as time flew by. The offer of support is open for me to use and it’s confidential unless I say that I feel like killing myself or the kids, understandable I think that anyone would have to notify the authorities if this were the case.
So on balance I think I will go again, don’t know if Steve will ever want to go but sometimes you don’t realise what it is you need until you stumble upon it. Anyway so that’s my day in the wonderful world of cancer.
It’s Monday and all you lucky people have been busy at work, moaning about it being another Monday and discussing your weekend of fun. I miss sharing all that stuff with my BHS team but I know that we will catch up soon during precious moments.
Oh Rita! “For the love of the Lamb!”
I tried to cook Irish Stew and my pot exploded on me, mines broken! Oh well you can’t say I didn’t try to embrace the Irish theme but for fecks sake Rita I then spent the next 10 minutes picking crockery out of my lamb steaks!