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Princes Risborough, Buckinghamshire, United Kingdom

The fall out of Cancer

Here we are in Copenhagen to spend a few days with my daughter and attend an Editors concert which my daughter organised for me for my birthday and mother’s day. Just my luck I have come on, on the flight, not what you need when its already pouring inside. The tears won’t stop and I feel like a broken person inside both physically and emotionally. We have been in our new home for 2 days. I’m sleeping on a blow-up mattress which isn’t too bad because I have no mattress for the bed. It should be a happy time moving in to a new home but I’m finding everything frustrating from opening the drawers in the kitchen which are quite stiff so I must remember not to pull with my right hand to realising the cupboards are quite high and require you to stretch which I am unable to. I also realise how limited I am in what I can do and when you have been independent most of your life it is difficult to rely on others to help you especially when I like things done my way. I look around the flat and if I had the energy everything would have been unpacked and organised with least amount of stress but that is not possible and so my son and his friend have unpacked all of my stuff. It is so infuriating that my son and his mate are having to unpack my smalls and organise my shit.
What a rollercoaster these past few weeks have been and its not even been 4 weeks since I had surgery! Sometimes life throws some real crap at you. I only really rested for about 2 weeks and then I was told by the consultant that 3 out of the 5 lymph nodes they removed during the mastectomy were cancerous so they may have to remove more or they may suggest Chemo, that depended on decision of the multi-disciplinary team. So they arranged an appointment for me with the oncologist. I then informed my insurer of the name of the oncologist to ensure I was covered and it transpired that they would only pay 60% of his fees because he does not sign up to their fee regime. I may have jumped to a conclusion but all that says to me at this moment in time is that he is charging more for his expertise however when he joined the profession, did he not sign up to a moral and ethical code, ‘ A Physician shall be dedicated to providing competent medical care with compassion and respect for human dignity and rights’. Since when did these services become commodities?
Well my son and I attended our first appointment with him and he was trying to fob us off almost as though he didn’t have time to discuss my treatment and kept re-iterating that my consultant would discuss my treatment further and not him.
So the next time I attended an appointment with my consultant I told him as much. I have also asked my insurers to provide me with details of why some consultants sign up to a fee regime and some don’t.
The tall and short of it is that I must have another operation to have more lymph nodes removed to see if anymore are cancerous. This will happen on the 3rd April 18 which means another drain for another week and more discomfort.  They are going to give me 2 weeks or so to recover and I will have my first dose of Chemo. I will then have Chemo every 3 weeks for 12 weeks and then every week for another 12 weeks. Due to swelling the Frankenstein boob, had to have another scan to check there was no build up of fluid, which there hasn’t but the area has been swollen for some time and my chest area periodically feels very tight as though I can’t breath. The breast care nurse did give me the once over yesterday and confirmed I was fit to travel.
Basically, I had a very small window within which to find somewhere to live because I couldn’t live with my best friend forever, logistically it was not feasible albeit he has been absolutely wonderful by allowing us to stay.
As you can tell we did find somewhere to live which is a 5-minute walk from work. That was important because it meant I don’t have to drive if I don’t feel up to it and still get to work. This also brought about its own difficulties in that I needed to go to Devon and pack the house which meant asking the Ex and the current tenant to leave. She was not best pleased and made life incredibly difficult by doing various things on of them being, leaving most of her stuff in the house when I had just gone and packed all of my stuff at the weekend.
That was a difficult journey back from Devon because on the way back we were caught in bad weather that I didn’t anticipate. We left at 6 p.m. and didn’t get to my best friends until 12.30 a.m. in the morning. I swelled up after that and then I did another trip in the week because that suited someone else because they were busy at the weekend. That was a day after I turned another year older, which was an incredibly stressful day but for other reasons. I wished I’d not agreed because I would have done things in my time and they would not have been witness to my shit. I opened my life to them because they insisted on being part of it. I have never expected anything from this person and they have always surprised me and each time they have given whole heartedly but they didn’t today and they let me down. I do feel quite broken and I’m struggling to put myself together a bit like humpty dumpty. I’m only human, I’m at my lowest and its ok for others to shit on me and no I am not being a victim, just give me a break. There is only so much one person can deal with. So in one week I turned a year older, told I have to have another operation because there are cancerous cells remaining, shitted on by various people because of the mistakes of my past, (who doesn’t make mistakes) packed a house in Devon and moved in to a flat with my son and dumped. All in a week’s work hey. The one thing I can say is that whilst I may be broken today and I may be broken for a little while, I still have the capacity to take a chance on life because life is too short. Tell that one  person you care even if they don't want to know then you will have no regrets.

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