I had my idea of how I was going to get through this cancer experience. I knew it would be an uphill journey but had images of me putting on my floaty summer dress and a flower in my hair, skipping up the hill to the meadow at the top, picking up the cancer like a dandelion clock and gently blowing it away.
Yesterday, No more than two steps from the bottom the sun moved at the top of the hill revealing a big, ugly, greasy, juggernaut. The rear doors flew open and the entire haul of wrecking balls came storming down the hill knocking me for 6. Just as I lift my head to try and see any sign of daylight I see some Git has released the handbrake.
So what triggered this change of scenery?
I went to see the surgeon who would perform my mastectomy and reconstruction. I went alone. Bad bad idea. However strong you think you are, turns out there are some things you just shouldn’t do alone;
- Drink prosecco
- Go to Breast Cancer appointments
I went in feeling positive but every mention of the word Cancer, complications, chemotherapy, radiotherapy, reconstruction seemed to batter me a little bit more. And they were mentioned A LOT. I started to feel like I do when I listen to Halo by Beyonce.
I can feel your halo, halo, halo
I can see your halo, halo, halo
I can feel your halo, halo, halo
I can see your halo, halo…
Halo, halo, halo, halo, halo, halo
Ok Bey we get it!! They have a bloody halo!
I made it about half way through The Cancer song but when the “you will never be clear of Cancer” verse started I’d had my limit.
I could feel myself start to shrivel. Have you ever used a vacuum bag to pack clothes? You start to suck the air out until it looks like its as small as it will go, but more and more air just keeps coming out. These things shrink to a fraction of their size and I’m always amazed how much you can actually suck out! Suddenly I was that bag of clothes. Every ounce of everything I had was being sucked out.
My amazing breast care nurse could see I was struggling. She put her arm around me and lead me to another room.
When we were there I started to go into shock. Started vomiting. Now it wasn’t just metaphorical, I was literally starting to empty out. After everything had come up (sorry if you are eating, but then you shouldn’t really be on your phone/computer while eating so I’ll carry on…) I was in pain. Im sure we’ve all had that experience. You have nothing left so you are going through the motions but it just hurts. Usually with me its after one too many ciders which is infinitely more enjoyable than this!
I phoned my friend and sister…Come save me!!
When they arrived I could hear them talking but just laid there looking at a crease in the hospital sick bucket/cardboard trilby hat (check contents before doing the HILARIOUS cardboard trilby hat routine….)
After however long it was (usually I monitor time by what is on the TV. If tipping point comes on and there’s no kids in the house I know I’ve missed the school run. If there’s no TV I have no idea what time it is!). Anyway….after however long, we went home, went to bed. The day of hell was finally over.
There was however one good thing about the day- waking up at 2am, seeing someone in my bed and assuming I’d got lucky with a handsome doc. Although that was short lived when I realized it was my sister and her medical qualifications are negligible at best.
What I have learned is I have no idea what else is lurking at the top of this hill or what is likely to come and try and knock me down but I will definitely be more on my guard now. I will still try my best to complete the course with a touch of finesse but I may now put some protective armour on under my floaty dress.
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