Sunday, July 1, 2012


Over the six weeks since my last post, a lot of things have happened, and you could almost argue things have returned to normal.

Work is very busy with the end of financial year, budgets and the seemingly never ending array of "special projects" that keep surfacing to challenge an already hectic schedule.

Home life has also been busy with my rekindled relationship leading to a blending of households over the last couple of weeks.

Couple all of that with the health side of things being pretty much on an even keel, and it appears real normality has finally returned, so time for me to do some housekeeping and bring the blog up to date.

On the 20th of June, I had a medical day - dentist, doctor and clinic all on the same day. The dentist was for my annual check-up, and disappointingly, the x-rays revealed I need a couple of fillings.  Given before the cancer I rarely had fillings, this now recurring pattern of every visit = fillings is starting to get a tad tedious.  Yes, I accept it is a small price to pay in the overall scheme of still being alive, but it is just plain annoying. (It seems there is a 3rd cavity to be sorted out now - lucky me!)

The Doctor's visit was to address 3 things - ongoing heartburn, clarify the "virus activates cancer" statement from the after-hours visit and my "deformed" RH little finger.  Firstly, Tatiana was gobsmacked with the notion a virus would have any impact on re-activating the cancer.  Seems it is a load of bollocks, in fact some tests have shown that introducing a virus can actually attack the cancer.  That said, apparently there were some other nasty side effects, so we'll just stop there. The heartburn has been addressed by adding Omeprazole (losec) to my daily routine.  I was taking it during treatment for the same sort of reason, so taking it with my thyroxine each morning is no hardship.  After a week, it is indeed having the desired effect.  The deformity on my little finger (the top knuckle  is bent in at quite an angle) is apparently arthritis - great, something else to look forward to.  Apparently we can enlist some drugs to manage it if it becomes a real issue, in the meantime, I just need to wear gloves in coldish weather to minimise the discomfort.

The Clinic was the highlight of the day.  I confess that I was still a little apprehensive leading up to it, although probably less so than on previous occasions.  This visit was to be different for a whole lot of other reasons. Firstly, it was earlier in the day, so was the first time I've gone to clinic on my own.  Secondly, it was in general outpatients, whereas all the others have been in the plastics outpatients.  I went to my normal "venue" only to be sent off elsewhere - might pay me to actually read the appointment letter next time.  Thirdly, the Gang of Seven became a Gang of One - Mr Hamilton was on his own. That meant less prodding than usual, and he was actually really pleased with the look he got down my throat, even saying it was the best he's ever had (given the gag reflex kicked in, that surprised me, but I'll take it).  The clincher though was that my next appointment will be in four months time (normally every 3 months) and if everything continues to look as it is, they'll be pushed out to six monthly.

That is the breakthrough I've been waiting for.  A definitive statement that the cancer is no longer a threat.  It is now almost 2 years since treatment finished (August 16th), but with quarterly clinics still on the agenda, it's been hard to accept deep down that things are OK.

And to round it all out, I can now actually eat a pie, albeit occasionally - although experience has shown that finding a "good" pie is pretty damn hard to do as most of them are full of the fillers that make them somewhat of a gluggy mess.  On more than one occasion, I've thrown a pie away after one bite because it was just too stodgy.  Despite obviously relaxing my eating habits a bit (we all know pies aren't exactly healthy), and the exercise routines being in a bit of a winter hiatus, my weight is remaining static, which is a pleasant surprise.

There we are, all caught up again.