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Rock Maze
  • Writer's pictureNeil

So, let's review.

"Until he is asked to write at a reasonable length, he is a cheerful co-operative pupil. He would find it easier to accept the routine of work than to face the consequences of not doing it"

School report 23rd April 1969

The question is why? Why do I write this blog?

Is it cathartic? Yep.

Is it self indulgent? That's for you to decide (probably yes).

Is it fun? Sometimes.

Is it sad? Often.

Is it a rant? Not often.

Is it a diary? In part.

Is it reminiscing? Occasionally

Is it going to be here longer than me? Almost for sure.

But it's really just a collection of the typically random stuff that's in all our heads. The difference here is I'm jotting bits of mine down.

Closer to 50 rather than 40 years ago my cousin J.... told me the 3 simple rules of writing an essay. All you need to do is;

  • Say what you're going to say

  • Say it

  • Say what you've said

Well I've clearly taken absolutely no notice whatsoever. Sorry J.

So, am I going to review something? Let's review this chemotherapy tapestry so far. The warp and weft if you like. (briefly I was a weaving teacher would you believe?)

I was told something like this. "Your cancer is back and this time it's going to kill you. Not today, not tomorrow but kill you it will, and in the scheme of things it's gonna do it pretty soon. Let's say probably within the year" I heard this over 2 months ago. 2 MONTHS ALREADY!

But. Thank God there's a but. But with chemotherapy we can change that maybe to two years, maybe more.

So a no brainer don't you think?

"What's going to happen we're going to pop something called a port-a-cath into your chest so we can administer your chemotherapy as easily and effectively as possible". The benefits are that in between sessions my life can be as "normal" as possible. My very own "new normal". Don't moan about your covid style "New normal". You'll hopefully live to see the end of your "new normal".

So I set off down the port-a-cath route. 4 aborted appointments became my "new normal", YES 4! Eventually it was 5th time lucky but too late, my first chemo will need a PICC line. The PICC line went in the day before my chemo. OK great, it did the job but it also provided me with a bed full of blood and a trip to A&E. So the lead up to my first chemo was full of cancelled appointments. And the follow on was a 6am trip to a pretty large hospital where no one could remove a PICC line. Stress? I'd say so. More stress than only having 6 around the table at Christmas. But this is my "New normal"

Now this 5th port-a-cath appointment was bang in the middle of my "normal" life between chemo sessions, as was my consultant meeting, good timing. Same hospital (convenient) 2 hours in between (inconvenient). Just the right amount of time to drive home and back non stop. Genius. I'll refrain from regurgitating that appointment fiasco. I've got other regurgitations looming.

Anyway I have my second Chemo actually through my port-a-cath. But as I leave I'm informed that within the District Nurse Team in St Austell no one is available (with the necessary training) to remove my connections. Never mind just pop back to Treliske in a couple of days.

On Monday I notice a bit of a rash around my port-a-cath for which, only yesterday, I'm prescribed an antibiotic. These particular antibiotics (Flucloxacillin) make me vomit for my country and gives me diarrhoea that was so instant I'll never trust a fart again. I know, it happens. Today my medication was changed. Oh! Bugger! I was not given it to take home. A quick call to the Headland Unit. "Can you pop down for it". With dignity and grace I obviously said "I'm feeling a little better now. Of course I'll nip on down for it". Sorry I'm telling a veggie. (Like a porky but meat free). So my medication was taken by Blood Bike from RCH Treliske to St Austell Community Hospital because the Blood Bikes won't deliver to a home address. What's all that about?

On Sunday I get disconnected from my pump by the district nurse team (they're ok going to a home address). If they can't or won't I'll need to pop to RCH Treliske. That's my "new normal"

I've fully turned into a Cornish Victor Meldrew. When thick as ****. Oh! Hang on shouldn't that be as liquid as ****. When liquid as **** people invade my inner sanctum through the portal that is my television and complain about the few restrictions that covid 19 has layed upon them, I want to throw something at the telly.

When thick people moan about the Rule of 6 that's messing up Nanny's 90th birthday. Or Christmas will be crap with only 6 people. Then, my poor hard done by cretins, you're probably stupid enough to trade your New Normal for just about anything. How about trading with my New Normal.

Go on, I dare you.

So last night and this morning continues to be my New Normal.

I take my last pill of the evening to help me sleep, it works.

Off I wander to the spare room, I'm sleeping there while my pump is attached because it makes me pretty restless. I go to sleep late but it ok because it's good blog writing time. Needless to say I wake up early, take my morning pills, steroids, something for IBS and a new antibiotic (2 so far and I'm not feeling sick, a good sign). If Tricia is still sleeping, like today, it's back to bed for some Mortimer and Whitehouse. Then, when the time is right pop down to get breakfast for the pair of us to have in bed. It's a ruse really to get her to proof read my posts .

I'm feeling pretty good today and some excellent news, after the district/community nurse visits on Sunday I have no other appointments until next Thursday week that's 10 WHOLE DAYS!

Then, of course doing nothing by halves, I have a blood test at 08:45 then rush over to the National Trust car park at Crantock to commence my 5 mile walk at 10:00 (more info to follow) during which time I have a telephone consultation with Dr Parnell. To to take a quote from Book 1 of the Roman poet Horace's work Odes. Carpet time. Oops! That needs to be Carpe diem.

P.S. I'm still not trusting a fart!!

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Juliet French
Juliet French
Oct 03, 2020


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