Friday, 18 January 2013

Cycle 6: Hi Ho, Hi Ho, It's Off For Chemo We Go

And it's in! Despite another busy week that includes a birthday party for DD with six of her classmates and two younger siblings aged around three (there were also seven adults: me, TN, one of the mums (Q, in fact, whose DH had bowel cancer), my parents and my little brother and his girlfriend. Little bro is a policeman and off to do riot training next week, so surely this is a walk in the park? Anyway, DD had a marvellous time on her birthday and liked the cake that it had taken until 11pm the previous night to ice. Note to self: do not ask her next year what cake she wants. Tell her she wants a round cake with minimal decoration, not a cake that requires making sugar paste versions of school uniform. In the icing chaos I forgot to wrap 30% of her Christmas presents but she didn't seem to mind me running around wrapping them two minutes before she opened them. Our Cornwall weekend wasn't exactly restful either, seeing pirate ships in Charlestown, going to the Eden Project and flying kites on the beach at Pentewan as well as going out for dinner with DH (who ate everything on the menu that was out of bounds for me, charming) and seeing old friends. Old as in I've known them for nearly 20 years and DH even longer. Not restful, but soul tonic definitely.

So I was expecting, despite reflexology yesterday, another knock back. But neutrophils are reducing and platelets right back up so we can get on with this. The oncologist says there's nothing to be done on this one, that there are some drugs being trialled in the US that may help but they are not yet licensed for use, so we just have to go with this one.

DH works all day, drafting documents, and I try to get through the last of "The Killing" but keep dozing off. Fortunately the access needle, a new version that comes in fetching purple (to co-ordinate with the pink portacath?), creaks like mad and wakes me up. One of nurses talks me through the take out procedure for this new version so I can pass it on to the district nurses on Saturday so they are not completely freaked out and/or refuse to do it - apparently the latest round of NHS cutbacks includes a reduction in district nurse provision so they will not do home visits for patients who are able to travel to the surgery. That's fine, if you have transport. Some don't.

DH redeems himself after commenting that I am old, cheeky so-and-so, by returning from his lunch break with the most gorgeous (and large) chocolate brownie. I stuff it down before the non-eating kicks in again, completely ignoring the fact that I have put on two and a half kilos in three weeks. Now the chemo is in, that'll come off as I really can't eat massive meals for the first five days or so, grazing instead. The reflexologist recommended lots of protein to help ensure my body has lots around for cell formation, so I'll see what I can do.

Home. Exhaustion. Ghastly glutamine powder, which I am trying to find a good carrier agent for that isn't as sweet as Lucozade. Cranston's Apple and Ginger beer works well, FeelGood's non-alcoholic Mojito mix not so good but feels incredibly naughty. Between that and the Movicol, which has to be taken in water, it's not surprising I don't want to eat as my stomach's so full of fluid.

By bedtime I look so rubbish DH is in tears for the first time in ages. My turn to try and boost him up with hugs and reassurances that we are over halfway, that this will pass. Doesn't stop it being hard on the ones you love though.

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