Archives for category: Life

My final chemo is looming and I’m all excited but I caught a cold. Cold symptoms are crap but it’s more the thought now of will it clear up before my last chemo or will there be a delay? I’m convinced in a couple of days my cold will have gone and the much awaited last chemo will be on time and the biggest part of my road to recovery will be almost over (it usually takes a week to 10 days to recover from the chemo). If I looked at this negatively I could read all the online posts about chemo and having a cold, low blood counts and pneumonia etc. I’m past the ‘danger’ days, I qualified for the expensive injection this time to boost my white blood cells (lucky me ) so my cold will run its course and chemo will finish on time, yey.
It’s my own fault I have a cold though. It’s my impatience. Having not gone out since January, I felt good and I thought I deserved a night out. I went for a meal with a friend, then for a few drinks, then everything went pear shaped (I won’t go into detail). I ended up having the worst night I’ve had for a long time. Note to self: You’re not strong enough yet!! I’m supposed to avoid places like pubs because of low immunity and infection and I need to avoid certain types of people too.
My night out though has led to me noticing a good change in myself. Alcohol is bad stuff, it changes people’s personalities and rationality and with all I’m putting up with at the moment with a smile on my face, I’m not strong enough to deal with other people’s problems, I’m not being selfish, just realistic. I won’t be pubbing it again anytime soon with people who can’t control themselves , I’m remembering to focus on me and I’m not putting up with people who make me feel bad. I noticed on my night out I had actually stopped being the people pleaser, afraid of upsetting anyone and I won’t put up with things or people I would previously have put up with. This is indeed a very good change.
So I’ll now carry on blowing my nose and coughing with a bit of sleeping in between. Have a good week and remember to focus on what makes you happy.

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Well it’s 6am and I’ve woken several times in the night. This because I have another chemotherapy treatment at 11am today. It’s never bothered me much before but after bad reactions and hospital stays after the last two doses I am very apprehensive about what will happen this time. I’m trying to keep strong and positive but I know the reality, my body is weak now.
The good thing about it is this is my 7th chemo and I only have one more after tomorrow. That’s my focus, 18th April is the last one hooray!!. Then a relaxing May and recovery period before surgery and any other treatment. I honestly feel like a pin cushion and I should be rattling the amount of tablets I’m taking ha ha.
On a positive note I still have my sense of humour, the determination not to let all this get me down and the knowledge that I’ve come a long way since November last year. I have great friends who have been with me all the way and visited me in hospital. I honestly thought they would get thrown out on their last visit. We were a bit noisy and laughing a lot, but as I have to stay in a room on my own due to low immunity at least we could shut the door to lower the noise. Apologies to other patients but it did me the world of good. Thanks girls.
Anyway back to today and fighting the fear, part of reinventing myself is to reject fear. Fear of what if. We all worry way too much about things that never happen and although for me this is happening I focus on a better future with less worry and fear about things that are not worth my time and energy. Here’s to a brighter future for us all – and a big wish, hope, hope, a lovely summer for us all to enjoy.

 

So reinventing myself starting with my hair? I could go for a 1980s Annie Lennox cropped bleached look. I’ve always had dark hair, so I might give that a go even though I think I suit dark hair better. Once it’s bleached I could try all sorts of colours. I’d have to check first though as I have been told to leave my hair for 12 months after radiotherapy as it makes hair brittle and prone to break off if you mess around with it too much. Hopefully I’ll be able to mess around and experiment.

Chemotherapy has rid me of my long thick hair. This is when I started to think about reinventing myself. When you have long hair the thought of cutting it short is a bit daunting but when it falls out in handfuls and you shave what little you have left, (my 8 year old son enjoyed doing that for me), you begin to realise that hair is not that important. It doesn’t matter if you have it long, short, dye it different colours. I think I’ve probably been nervous about doing anything really drastic to my hair in the past but now I have a ‘clean slate’ to start from I can try styles I wouldn’t have tried before.  I can change the colour regularly without too much damage because I can cut it again and the damaged hair will grow out pretty quickly. Having a shower is great too. Hey, I always say you have to look at the positives! It takes about 5 minutes to have a shower, no hair drying, no styling, so quick and easy.

I can really feel the cold now I have no hair but it’ll grow back before long and I know I will enjoy washing, brushing and styling my hair and I will definitely appreciate it, long, short, dark, light, whatever  I choose.

This is me reinventing myself, my life, my future. Last Oct (2011) a was given a right good kick up the backside when I was diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 39. My mum has had recurring cancer but I always thought I would be at least 10 years older than I am if I was to have poor health. So needless to say financially I was not prepared though I am getting by.

I’ve been faffing around for a few years now as regards career and life in general and I’m seeing this time off work as an opportunity to evaluate my life, my priorities and where I want to be in 12 months time. Though chemotherapy leaves me drained, I still have days like today where I can read, write, think and make plans for my future.

My priority now is to reinvent myself and focus on me and my son instead of thinking about other people and their wants and needs. I count, I am worthy of my time and I am the most important person now along with my son. So here’s to planning, to writing, to doing things that make me feel fabulous and happy inside. Here’s to being more selfish and living the best life I can.

Julie