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  • Neil

100 posts and I'm still here.


This is the 100th blog post. 99 from me and one from Lauren. We started on the first of August not long after my cancer was found to have returned. There's a lot of reasons for writing this blog all of which are well rehearsed. For the past 4 months I’ve invited you to follow my journey.


I’ve had some fantastic supportive, loving comments and touching, sometimes irreverent (in the nicest way) feedback. Some of you have joined my walks, joined me for coffee, invited me for lunch and dinner. There’s been lots of tears and lots of hugs. My health may have begun to deteriorate. At least it’s seemed like that for the last couple of days. When I was diagnosed I resolved to undertake the last big jobs I wanted to do on the house.


My meeting with my consultant was harrowing for both Tricia and I. Without treatment, I was informed, that I might last a year. With treatment it’s likely to extend my life by possibly another year. So I obviously opted to undergo 6 months of chemotherapy with a review half way through. Any sort of chemotherapy is challenging but you just need to focus on the goal.


Immediately I started the kitchen project by carefully dismantling our existing kitchen and reassembling it in the garage. That way we would continue to have a functioning kitchen which would later serve as a utility room. Realistically I might be really slow with the kitchen installation. To clear the garage it was bye bye MX5 and the kayaks were relegated to an outside rack. Then, once Tricia and I had finalised the design we ordered the units and prepared the walls and floors. The kitchen’s still not quite finished (possibly a record) but had I finished sooner I would have already started the conversion of the downstairs toilet into a shower room. That project has already been shelved. If I’m looking for the positive you could argue the delay in the kitchen is a good thing in a frustrating sort of way.


Why shelve a project I hear you ask? Well it’s like this. Last week, during my review, with my consultant, I heard that my chemo has had no impact and the cancer has continued to spread which means I’m back to a predicted 1 year. Unfortunately 4 months of that year have already passed so my prognosis is pretty poor. Tricia and I have begun to revise our plans.


Any delays in my plans, to me, is always hard to bear. I can’t stand being late for anything or people being late and making me wait. I’m now acutely aware of that intolerance. Maybe I should chill a bit.


Having cancer and writing my blog has also meant I’ve had the opportunity to reconnect with friends. Maintaining friendships needs a little bit of work and commitment. Not always easy with our busy lives. My forced retirement, unemployment, disability, (delete as appropriate) hasn't seemed to have given me much more time than when I was working .


However one reconnection worthy of note is Emma. Emma and I worked closely together some years ago. We kept loosely in touch, you know, not much more than Christmas cards. Then Emma lost her husband to bowel cancer when he was only 34. Circumstances changed and we lost touch. We found each other again in Tesco no less and resolved to stay in touch. By that time I was in remission from my first bout of cancer. Emma had decided to raise some money for Bowel Cancer UK by organising walks along the River Gannel at Crantock / Newquay. Each walk clashed with my appointments for treatment, by this time my cancer had returned. Undeterred Emma and I decided to do the walk anyway, I invited friends through my blog and asked for some money to be donated to her charity through her Just Giving page. That was very, very successful. We raised a shed load of money. Well beyond either of our expectations. We’re still walking and still raising money and now Emma and I are firm friends.


Now I have new projects. Making memories, sorting out lots of paraphernalia and making, sometimes difficult decisions.

Keep following my blog, keep joining me for walks and meeting me for my virtual coffee club. It’s all nourishment for my sanity.


What you need to know is the details of the next walk and how to pop a couple of quid into the charity. It’s all below.


See you soon.


For the next walk follow this link; https://www.iwalkcornwall.co.uk/walk/luxulyan_valley_to_prideaux#.X8dfGDSf9yQ.link. the meeting point is at Ponts Mill at 10am.


For the next virtual coffee club which is every Tuesday at 10am;

Join Zoom Meeting

https://us04web.zoom.us/j/9550272972?pwd=VHNzU21iY3AvR1A2TDFCbDFVNFEzUT09

Meeting ID: 955 027 2972

Passcode: 9RktZt


But above all donate here;

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/cornwallwalkstogether




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