The New Me – One Boob and No Wig!

D Day had dawned (or should I say DD Day)…..time to operate to remove the cancer from my body which had been thankfully contained in my boob Cancerous Chloe.   Drove to the hospital to meet my sister there, I was honestly cool, calm and collected.  Nothing playing in the car just me and my thoughts and no tears on the journey, I think I was ready had been fairly upset the day before.

Checked into admissions where I met another girl I know going through the same operation that day we had a big hug and a chat.  As I was a bit late I think she got in before me and I was left waiting a while.   Mia arrived and unfortunately no coffee as had been fasting since 12 the night before. We have a good chat think she was surprised I was so calm and we also had a good giggle checking out the fantabulous gown I would have to don and the lovely cream knee-length socks (both ended up in my suitcase on the way home bloody fairies!!).   Surgeon popped in around 12 to say hello to me and to say he would see me soon was thinking Jesus hope he wasn’t out on the tear last night and had a shaky hand.

We then went up to pre-op and Mia was allowed to go with me, the nurses I must say were great characters. I was still really calm and we managed to have a good laugh with both Mia and the nurses.  A friend had told me to ask for a pre-op sedative to help me relax before the operation I asked the nurse and she just laughed saying “emmmm you seriously don’t need one”.  Surgeon strolled by and nurse asked if I had any questions I said yes one and asked him when I would know if my cancer had gone, he said “it is gone, it will be gone, it will be cutout all of it” I said to Mia “you got that” :-) happy days.  About to be wheeled in to pre-op said goodbye to Mia she however had to be let out so she could get the lift five floors down instead of taking the stairs – the lazy git.  I was laughing saying Jesus I am getting my boob cut off and you can’t take the stairs.  Wheeled into theatre a fabulous view of Dublin Bay I remember it was very cold and there was around eight people in there…. that’s the last I remember.

Woke up around 8pm I think Jonas was in the room with me reading the newspaper I remember I was all over the place and totally Ga Ga.  Jonas has been fantastic in the past week and so supportive and helpful with everything.  All I kept saying was “I want coke, I want coke”, he said we couldn’t as there was a small problem and they may need to operate again.  It was confirmed that I had a blood clot and had to go down again.  10pm they decided to operate at 630 next morning and I was brought my tea and toast and my coke!   The doctor did mention something about fasting I vaguely remember, Jonas went home around 11pm I think and I then I got woken up on the hour for temp and blood pressure til the men in white came to collect me!   Down to pre-op again the nurse asking me about fasting there was a bit of confusion when I admitted to the coke.  They were not impressed I quickly calculated okay last sip at 3am as there was no way I was getting off that operating table….. anyhow op went ahead last I remember again was Dublin Bay….

Came through around 11am next morning and seemed fine (to myself anyhow) I held court to three friends at around 12pm I think, all three are in different stages of breast cancer.  One of the ladies Mary I had never met before was great to meet you Mary – I am sure when I look back now I must have been totally twatted when you were all talking to me.  Jonas came in later on think I slept a lot in the afternoon, Mia came in for the evening shift looking back now its all sort of a blur.   At this stage in the whole process I didn’t really have time to think about what had happened and was probably still out of it after the two general anesthetics.  The following day had loads of visitors and I thank you all, Naomi, Liz, Lisa, Mary, Sinead, Mary Benson, Emer, Sean, Therese, Colly, Anne (if I have forgotten anyone please forgive me).  Jonas and kids came in that evening (I was extremely tired at that stage) the kids eyed me very nervously especially Beca (she loved my boobs) and she wanted to see what “it” looked like I showed her my bandage and it didn’t phase her I told her she could feel it if she wanted which she gladly did and that was that.  The other two girls stayed sort of clear of “it” gave me hugs etc but were quite quiet (I felt anyhow).  I fell asleep in the middle of them being there, they woke me up and then left.

The following day which was a Friday was a terrible day it was like my day of dawning or realisation what had happened to me over the last few days.  I stripped in the bathroom and made myself look at what was left of me.  It was not a pretty picture Floppy Fiona as dangly as ever and then nothing on the other side apart from a big huge flat bandage and bruises around it all and two drains hanging off it.  I felt butchered. I honestly think in hindsight think I was very naive going into the operation and really thought I would have something there when I woke up.  I spent most of the day crying and falling asleep only my folks visited for a half an hour that day.  Was definitely one of the lowest points of this whole cancer trip and I call it my day of mourning and I think both my body and myself needed to do it.

Saturday was a better day and I got out on Sunday after a bit of confusion and language barrier between the overseas doctors and nurses.  Each day since I have been getting stronger and stronger.  The way I am thinking of now is I have had my mourning its now time to get my ass in gear realise that my cancer is gone, there are plenty of people in a worse off position than me, get on with life I wont always be this butchered in body and soul and I am now ready for the next part of the road-trip.   I am also so god damn happy that is over with now its a huge relief to me.

During the time in hospital I had so many well wishes, texts, messages, calls etc.etc. even in the really dark times these put a smile on my face.  So many of my family being strong and being there for me Jonas, the girls, Mia, my folks, my brothers you guys have been brilliant of course along with the many friends that I am so fortunate to have in my life.  I had two people who I have never met face to face before Mary and Naomi who I have met through this blog as they have been down the cancer trail – how amazing is that you can build up a relationship with someone via a blog and Facebook and become great friends and then finally get to meet – that was very special and I felt I had known them all my life!

I have been relaxing since I came home and under orders from everyone to rest-up (not really sure what that means) but am resting up way more than normal.  I have been involved in a great event happening for a lovely young lady called Leah Little from Greystones who is fourteen years of age and has bone cancer.  We are running a gig in the Stillorgan Orchard ont he 19th May from 4pm-10pm to raise funding for Leah to go overseas to receive vital treatment.   There is a big gig happening with four great bands, The Shoos, Superfly, Stepaside and a Fistfull of Oranages admission is €10 in and it will be a great afternoon/evening for a great cause.  It would be great to make this a huge success you can find out more about the event on Facebook or on www.gigforleah.com   Really looking forward to this event will be the first night I will be out – mightnt be shaking my things as much as I was at the last party as I only have one to shake – but will sure give it a lash :-) but maybe on the barstool :-)

I have decided its time to dump Daisy my faithful rug, wig, hat over the last six months, time has come to be bare and bald and you know what it feels good!  Hair is growing back still looks quite fuzzish so might have to give it one more shave but think Daisy has seen her day and might come out just the odd time now.   It feels good to go out bald(ish) hey this is me, this is Dee and I am good with it :-)

“I can see clearly now the rain has gone” will be singing “I can see clearly now the drain has gone” on Friday when they take these two Salt and Pepper huge yokes attached to me!!!  These lovely new accessories can be worn casually from the hips and are on trend this season.  Loads of uses such as vodka for pubs, salt n vinegar for the foodie or cocktail shakers.  Hurry while stocks last.

Good things that happened this week

  • Doctor said I was CANCER FREE (official results Friday)
  • I woke up after two operations :-)
  • I lost around 6lbs in six hours
  • I was cool, calm and collected on way to operation
  • Don’ think I accosted any of the cute doctors
  • Got lovely bouquet of flowers from Bentley Systems (Thanks Cassie, AnneMarie, Helen and Others)
  • I got a lovely private room to myself in Vincents with en suite
  • Lovely lasagna from sis-in-law Mairead on return
  • Fabby Meal from the lovely Ger today – yummy
  • Lovely Flowers from Lucie in Sweden
  • Some great and funny Get Well Cards arriving daily
  • Its SUMMER

Next stop for me now is meeting surgeon on Friday and planning the next step on the road to me Kicking the Shite out of Cancer which is radio therapy and continuing reconstruction. Summing it up it was a tough week but I’m out the other side and ready to get going again!

Its Summer :-)   Enjoy it do things you never dared do before :-)   Its fun :-)

 

 

Posted in My Updates | 24 Comments

Bye Bye Boobie

Well that “detour” in my life is coming to the next stage.  Time to go and get rid of this cancer out of my body.  Unfortunately this cancer is in my boob and I really don’t want to get rid of one of the girls but hey this girl was trying to kill me.  “Dont mess with the best cos the best don’t mess”  so off with her!

All set with the following about to be put in my “non pink” suitcase

  • Jammies (Button down for comfort after op)
  • Dressing Gown
  • Safety Pins to hold the drains after
  • Slippers
  • 8 Bottles of Pinot Grigio for me and my new friend who will unfortunately also be with me tomorrow
  • New extremely sexy bras (NOT)
  • Laptop
  • iPhone
  • iPhone charger (most important of all things!)

Feeling extremely strange all day today and any time I think of the pending operation I get misty eyed and my tummy is in a heap.  Have had loads of phone calls, texts, messages and well wishers which is wonderful starting to get a bit choked though in some of the calls.   Who is this person?  the big strong lady who has gone through all of this so far, why be so sad now?  I am not nervous or scared just sad.  Every time I think of getting my boob taken away it makes me sad, each shower is one less shower with two (of my own) boobs!   Being totally honest I know this boob was trying to kill me and by getting rid of Cancerous Chloe I am going to be on my way to recovery.  However no matter what way you look at it it’s still sad so there!!!!  :-) :-)

Hope the above makes sense and that I am allowed a few hours of sadness through all of this crap.  I wouldn’t be true to myself or this blog if I was saying that I was lepping around the garden with joy at the thought of it!!  However I am so looking forward to this operation being over and continuing to get better by the day and start the beginning of my new life with my new boob!  HEY we havent got a name for her yet – what you reckon?

Heading in at 0750 tomorrow to Vincents not sure I’ll be playing Rod on the way over must find something lively to perk me up (excuse the pun).   Not sure of exact time of operation yet but probably around 11 or 12 there will be a lot of prep first then the dreaded wait outside the operating room.   Someone suggested I get a sedative as this person was a toughie like myself but lost it waiting outside – drugs – OH YEAH ME PLEASE!  Was going it alone but “may” let my sister come with me ;-)

The operation is in three parts the mastectomy, the reconstruction (a tiny boob that will be pumped up over time) and then lymph node removal from my right arm they, as far as I know, are taking them all out as the bugger started to travel down that route.   The operation in total is around 4/5 hours and will be in hospital around 4/5 days after it.  I certainly wont be hollering to go home am going to get cosy and take my time in there, a lot of drains and other bits and pieces to be looked after so would prefer them to look after it than me.   Just cant wait to wake up after the operation and know that it’s OVER and that my cancer is gone that’s the main thing!

Hope they wont be playing Queenie Eye Oh or Piggy in the Middle with my boobie in Theatre!

Recovery time after they say is 4-6 weeks worst part is that I probably wont be able to drive for that length of time either to me that’s serious cabin fever.   The worst part of the recovery is the arm as opposed to the breast (or non breast or new mound not sure what to call it – lets just call it the thing that is in place of Chloe).  It’s very important to get up and moving ASAP and get movement back in the arm with exercises that they give you etc.

Thats if folks as Midnight Oil tune says “the time has come” get it off, get on with my life.  I am as strong and positive as ever in my mind with the determination to Kick the Shite out of Cancer so don’t fear folks I havent lost it.

Once again sincere thanks to all of you for making the last eight months in a really strange way some of the best months of my life.  I am truly blessed with you all behind me and all the thoughts, prayers, angels, healing powers are all being packed away in my head and brought with me tomorrow.

ONWARDS AND UPWARDS

Dee xx

 

 

Posted in My Updates | 64 Comments

Kicking the Shite out of Tumours Booze Up

Fabulous drawing from Ste 087 2314574

Well time to celebrate nuking the tumours!  Venue the Goat Grill at 8.30 on 13th April – well what can I say but WHAT A NIGHT!!

Booked into a local hotel as folks house had the kids :-) we got dressed and down for a quick drink.  While there Eilish and Kerri glued my nails on (as I have none) my daughter Katie glued my eyelashes on earlier (as have none of those either).  We all hopped into a taxi Jonas, Eilish, Kerri and myself.  Rocked up to the Goat and into the Anvil room at 8.30 awaiting people!  Nothing more nervous than sitting at your own party waiting for people to arrive.  Every time the door opened we were like, okay this is someone but it was the barman or something.  The DJ arrived (fabulous guy and DJ) I went up to introduce myself and said “I am Deirdre I am the person holding the party” he said “Happy Birthday” I said “No it’s not my birthday I have cancer” the poor guy didn’t know where to look then I explained that it was a Cancer Party after finishing chemo – he said he had never done one of those before, told him to add it to his CV!!

People filed in quickly enough to say I felt the most privileged girl in the world is an understatement.  Friends filed in first was a great school friend Kerensa and then on loads of people arrived.  People who I have never even met apart from Facebook that I was so delighted to meet like Emer and her lovely husband Bruce, Tim (my chemo buddy with the orange crocks and his wife Michelle), the lovely lady Anne Redmond who I have also never met and made the effort to come by herself to this party and did not know anyone.  To these people in particular I salute you – you seriously made my night to make the effort! Talking about effort my cousin Kerri Featherstone came all the way from the USA for the event!!!

What can I say I just had a ball people were there that I havent seen in years like my great buddy Karen Meagan (eight years is way too long) and just so many other people just too long a list to mention – Dympna, Ian, Pat, Mauley, Debbie, Ed, Sharon, Jim, Alan, Grainne, Catherine, Mark and on and on and on all who I havent seen in donkeys.  Also my great friend Eileen was celebrating here birthday so we had two things to party for!

I was just blown away and can’t describe the feeling that so many people turned up who have helped me so much over the last few months.  I seriously take so much out of all your friendships and support you will honestly never know just how much it all means to me!

Then the music really started and I went up and made a speech and my brother Colly came up and said a few words.  Only thing I had planned and forgot to do was do what Samantha did in Sex and the City (when she had breast cancer) while making the speech say “fuck its hot” and throw off my wig – I was raging.  However I threw it off on the dance floor a while later and it felt fan fucking tastic – I was roasting!!!!

I’ve never danced so much and we all went nuts on the dance floor with the usual piggy in the middle dances, arms over arms dances, a train and loads of head banging.  I swear my feet were on fire after it and was ordering water instead of vodka (that must be a first).

Hope you enjoy the photos folks.  A huge thanks to Marie McGarvey who went around all night to take photos and she was the last to leave – thanks Marie!!!

 

Has to have been one of the best nights of my life way better than my 21st, 30th and 40th (wow am I over 40?)

Thanks from the bottom of my heart it was truly amazing being on the dance floor with all my friends new and old and them all being so happy that I have done so well through this chemo  crap – ooops getting misty eyed must post this before I get the hanky out!

YOU ROCK!!!!

Morning after photo I was left with my memories and the below!

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Neither here nor there but so much better than the start!!

Well folks its been a while since I have written nearly three weeks that must be my longest yet.  So whats been happening?  Life I suppose is getting back to normality, no more chemo so my whole life is not planned around Vincents every third Thursday.  Was great to wake up last Thursday and not have to go in for chemo.  To be honest I never minded the going into chemo part as it was (in a weird Dee way) quite enjoyable it was when the last bag of it hit you for the next ten days I hated!

Have been feeling great the last few weeks and last chemo didn’t seem as bad as the other seven so that was a bonus.  Have had a couple of great nights out, some fun long lunches, couple of shopping trips, a lovely spa break with my sis and a three-day break in Cork with the family.   Not bad for a sick chick hey!!  Sick?  whose sick?  Someone reminded me about that a while ago and said well you are sick Dee, I was a little taken aback I don’t consider myself sick.    See now there’s a good question am I still sick?  I know I still have cancer but I am hoping that will be taken out of me by the end of this month, then of course will be recuperating for a while after the operation and then loads of Radio Therapy etc.  In my mind I am not sick, I have cancer alright though……..  was thinking earlier today and a few other times as well maybe I am not taking this seriously enough then I thought NO….. that means I would actually have to think about me having cancer and that’s the last thing I want to do.  I must admit I have not once strayed in my mind that there would be any other result than a good one after my time with cancer.   I’m still me just had two things growing within me which have been nearly nuked to fucking Timbuctoo!!  I am also very mindful of people who have not been as lucky and people I know now that are fighting way harder than I am.

I am still very much in cloud cuckoo land most of the time what I mean is I suppose concentration and am very airy fairy (not usually like me).  Also quite emotional all the time which again is not like me and maybe I put that down to the menopause which I was gladly given as a bonus with chemo (congratulations Deirdre yes you have won yourself eight rounds of chemo and yes that’s not all, as a bonus prize you get to go into early menopause too)!   I feel outside of myself sometimes not the person I used to be and I am definintely not the same person that I was six months ago I do things now that I wouldn’t have done then – why?  because I can :-)   because I should :-) because I deserve to :-) who knows I don’t question things any more but I certainly know now that life is not a dress rehearsal.

Before I forget or get carried away check out the new Man App Reminder for Breast Cancer way better to watch than read those leaflets with cartooned boobs!!!!

Remember the New Look competition I won with your help as you voted for me well we had that just before Easter.  I will fill you in with all the details when we get the pictures we had a great time.

Just come back from a lovely three night break in East Cork, Youghal with the family was a good break and the kids had an absolute ball.  The hotel left a lot to be desired and I was raging I left my belly tops and velour trackie pants for all occasions at home :-)   Youghal is a lovely area and we spent a good bit of time driving around Cork.  On Saturday night no-one wanted to go to the hotel for a drink I was not impressed.  Rebecca my six-year-old said I’ll go Mammy, so off we went, we both had a drink and there was someone playing on the keyboard and singing and loads of kids up dancing.  I said to Beca “do you want to dance” she said “No I am not dancing by myself” I said “no with me” – her little face lit up with excitement we had three dances she was chuffed!   See I am no longer to cool for school :-) hopefully I never was!

Check out The Girls and Me on a Sunny Cork Morning!!

Next stop for me is my mascteomy operation on 23rd April this is when Cancerous Chloe gets the chop along with what is leftover of my tumours.  At the same time they will try a reconstruction which will be a small boob that will be “pumped up” over a few months to make it bigger!  Bit like going into the garage to fill your tyres :-)    Everytime I think about the operation I tell myself not to think about it and I dont want to think about it.  I know it is something that has to be done and of course it will rid me of my cancer so thats what I focus on.   On the day they will also remove the lymph nodes from my right arm so it will be a long operation, boob, reconstruction and lymphnodes around 8 hours in total!  So its not just lobbing the boob off and saying here catch or playing piggy in the middle around the operating room with it.

One very important thing though will be happening before this.  Celebrating nuking the tumour booze up this Saturday 13th April, Goat Grill, Goatstown.  At this stage we have choice of both DJ and general area of a great band.   Would love if you could join me for a beer – everyone is welcome the more the merrier!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Good things that have Happened

  • A new friend of mine has found out that cancer is NOT in her bones!!!
  • My cousin Kerri Featherstone from the USA is coming over for my booze up and staying a week – cant wait!
  • Another friend of mine is nearly on her last chemo
  • The kids are back at school – WHOOP WHOOP
  • I’ll have a head of hair like Sinead O’Connor again this time tomorrow gone with the fuzz – have to shave three time before the real McCoy comes back
  • Its (nearly) getting warmer!!
  • Loads of people are coming to The Goat on Saturday for a drink

Thats if folks – delighted to be back writing again could have written all night!  Hope to see you Saturday and if you cant make it don’t worry the REALLY BIG one is still to come!!!

Dee xxx

 

 

 

 

Posted in My Updates | 15 Comments

Chemo Finished – are we there yet? are we there yet?

Well 8th and Final round of chemo now complete another check box (a big one) off my Kicking Cancer list.   Still plenty to go so wont be hanging up my blog for a hell of a long time yet (don’t know if that’s good or bad news for you!) ;-)

Heading over to my last chemo was the weirdest drive on the M50 of all of my chemos.  From when I left Clane til I got to Dundrum turn off there were tears literally rolling down my cheeks.  Now these were’nt moist eyes these were seriously falling and if I had eyelashes my face would have been black from mascara.  I am still looking back on it and wondering how amazing our bodies are – I wasnt driving feeling sorry for myself, or scared of cancer or chemo of anything.   I think it was my body storing up loads of emotions over the last six months and they decided to let loose to the sound of Rod on Thursday morning.  I also got very emotional thinking about people who have died from cancer who I didn’t know but were friends of friends and recently I have heard their stories.  Maybe those emotions were relief, sorrow and gratitude all mixed into one.    Face clear by Rathmore Avenue.

Bounced into Vincents and I felt great I confidently checked in at the Cancer Reception and the receptionist asked me when was my next visit so she could schedule me in – I said this is my last and wow it felt good!!  ”Hopefully”, I said to her “I will never have the pleasure of meeting you again”.   Settled myself down in the waiting room and started chatting to one of the ladies I have met loads of times before, we had a good chat and were laughing about our chemo brain and and how they have gone to mush.  At the end of the conversation she got called in and she said “sorry I can’t remember your name” I said “don’t worry I can’t remember yours either” we had a laugh.  After meeting each other around six times and introducing ourselves we still couldn’t remember names!

Got my bloods done very smoothly this time, got the lovely nurse “emmmmmm can’t remember her name now” to take the photo of me with my signs, she thought this was hilarious she said she has never seen a patient doing it before!    Off for coffee with my great cousin Terry Kinane we had plenty of caffeine and loads of laughs about ridiculous things like saucer burning chants in Jack Whites pub in Wicklow after a weekend in Brittas Bay – anyone remember that game where one person would end up with black all over their face?  We got kicked out in the end I think or very close to it.     Wow could got on about Brittas Bay stories all day but might get done for libel or then again might be a lot more interesting than cancer ;-)

Chemo went smoothly Terry stayed with me and was my personal slave and my friend Darina who is an Amazing Cancer Battler came up for an hour and then had the pleasure of Sinead who is nearly now finished her chemo.   In the meantime of course had a walk around the chemo room and had a chat with few others.   It’s quite a special sort of place you have a great bond and its like a club (albeit not a great one to be in) but a club nonetheless.

I have met so many fantastic people during chemo.  From the AJH (Ah Jaysus Howaya) who didn’t want to leave chemo, the lovely lady singing Garth Brooks, the mad Rasta Guy doing the Riverdance at Christmas, Tim with his orange crocks, the lady with the wooly hat under her wig, Mary from Bray, Catherine from Leixlip………. they are all amazing and thanks for the giggles along the way that we all sure needed.  I might be repeating myself but chemo and cancer is so humbling you realise how lucky you are (even with cancer) to not have it as bad as some other people and those people who have it really bad for them there is always someone worse of as well.  Fabulous spirit, Fabulous people, Fabulous laughs – overall it has been a great experience and I might sound like a nutter but I actually enjoyed it (apart from Christmas one where the lady was crying – who I have’nt seen since).

This blog was never meant to be a crusade for cancer with pink ribbons and me telling people all the time to get your boobs checked etc.etc.   However as usual I must have the last word :-)   Ladies if you feel there is something wrong and you get checked out and doctors fob you off, keep going, keep drilling, keep telling them you feel there is something wrong.  A friend of mine told me how she ended up in two doctors as no-one would take her seriously, she got mammo and ultra-sound and nothing showed up, she kept on and on saying there is something wrong.  Finally they gave her an MRI and they found huge cancer cells which could not be detected by the mammogram, this girl would have been dead within eight months if it hadn’t been found.    Folks we pay enough to Doctors etc lets not let them fob us off with  ”ah your grand” or “ah could be PMT” or “ah your just down”   Its YOUR body if you feel something is wrong keep on and on at them if your doctor can’t find out whats wrong go to another one.  Doctors can be changed as often as we like you know.  I am preaching all this and then get in a sweat when Doc comes to see me and I can’t remember all the questions I have for her – its ridiculous, why do we feel like this in front of doctors?   Hope the above makes sense, it’s a bit like motherhood and having a sick child you know your child and you know when there is really something wrong so go with your gut let nobody tell YOU how you are feeling sure how the feck would they know anyhow ;-)

Chemo machine beeped at me for last time and I was free to go, there was no brass band, no fanfare I just got unhooked from machine and thanked the nurses (hugged one of them) and said goodbye to the three patients that were left.  Wow its gonna be weird after having six months of my life all planned around chemo now not to go anymore outside my little cocoon which of course is where I wanna be.    Dad picked me up and we went to Featherstone Palace for some TLC and some Chicken (wrapped in bacon) and chips with my folks it was lovely.  Brother Colly called over for a while too.  I went happily up to my “heated” room, “fluffed up duvet” and was delighted to see a pair of rosary beads on my pillow and the Infant of Prague in my bed – my Dad had a great laugh doing that he said!  Wow love my folks they are the biz! Next morning hopped into bed beside my mother while Dad made us both breakfast – saying he has the patience of a saint is not enough!   This time has been a special time with my parents as it’s not often I get a sleepover with my folks.

In another two weeks I will be back on my feet and wont have this chemo fog hanging over my head.  At the moment my mouth feels like Gandhi’s left foot and my face looks like I have been sitting in front of a roaring fire for two hours it’s so red.  It will be a quiet Paddy’s weekend for me but I don’t give a crap I have plenty more Paddy’s Days to celebrate.

Check out the video the girls and myself made last night to celebrate having chemo finished we had a great laugh making it – as you can see I am not as quick to get up at the rest of them!!

Good things that happened this week

  • I finished chemo
  • Had loads of time with my cousin Terry
  • Had the pleasure to be with Darina and Sinead
  • I didnt have to make another appointment for chemo
  • 21,000 people saw my photo on last chemo – I am a tech head this for me is cool
  • Got brekkie in bed with me Mammy
  • Sun is shining and its the long weekend
  • No more English, No more French, No more sitting on a barbed wire fence!

Have a brilliant weekend all and again from the root of my toes to the new blade of hair on my head thats for coming with me on this trip.  Celebrate the life out of St Patricks Day weekend and have a blast!

 

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Chloe’s Debut in Theatre on 23rd April

Lovely day today isn’t it?  makes such a change when you wake up and see something blue in the sky instead of grey, grey, grey they could have made an Irish weather book called Fifty Shades of Grey – then again would have been a bit boring compared to the original … think I should stop typing all the one liners I am thinking of!

Well big news for me this week Cancerous Chloe is making her debut on 23rd of April to get the Mr Burgess.   All confirmed with surgeon so I will be donning the Blue Guna again and saying goodbye to hopefully all my cancer cells along with a good bosom buddy. Chloe has been part of me for quite some time and has caused me to be in many strange situations and her bosom buddy Floppy Fiona will be a little lonely.  Getting a little misty eyed writing this,  I don’t really have a problem getting rid of her as she certainly is not my friend at the moment but I suppose I wouldn’t be human even it didn’t make me a little sad.  Spent as I mentioned a while ago, most of my life disliking having big boobs and dressed accordingly at the big Aran Sweater and baggy t-shirts.  Recently I finally accepted yeah I have big boobs and I love em and instead of walking with rounded shoulders I bounced down the road instead proud as punch!  In fairness I did have to buy a lot of shades to hide the bruising.

I rang the Breast Clinic on Monday to confirm the date in between feeling extremely sorry for myself and being in a lot of pain.  This chemo seems to get me in the joints from the top of my head down to my toes, get a lot of tingling sensations like constant pins and needles.  I did try the wet behind my knees like we did as kids but didn’t work.   Gross as its sounds but nearly down to seven toenails….ewwww…..they are still there with the help of medical science (selotape).  Just goes to show you the poison that really is in chemo (which I am not complaining about as this poison is making me better).  Also chemo brain and metal mouth was pretty bad.  Simone my lovely friend asked me and the girls up for dinner on Sunday it was lovely big HUGE plate of sunday roast, I finished off the plate and had seconds, I find I am eating like a horse (and no that’s not a meat burger) and when I finish eating I wonder what I am going to eat next.  I don’t have a big appetite normally I think that it’s because I can’t taste the food the brain is not getting the signal that I am full :-)     Chemo brain is the worst can be in the middle of a conversation and totally stop as cant remember what I was saying or what I was about to say its very frustrating and I can sympathise for people who maybe getting to dementia stage its terrible when you are trying to grapple for words and your brain just wont help.    Wednesday evening started to pick up again thankfully and realise now that I will only have one more week of feeling this chemo crap.

Had appointment with plastic surgeon on Thursday which I was very excited about, my friend Lisa kindly accompanied me for a second pair of ears and it’s always great to have company.  We first met a very “hot” young doctor and he had my file in front of me and asked me something like “so whats the problem” I was like ehhh ”breast cancer” ahh I see he says……whats the point of having files??   He then said I see you live in Kildare, I quickly said “please don’t hold that against me I’m really from Dublin”, he said “I am from Kildare” I said “lovely place”…..

The main thing I want to do is have immediate reconstruction now this is not just as simple as taking one boob off and placing the new boob on and you wake up and you still have two boobs,  but one is much closer to your neck where the other one was years ago :-)   it’s a very difficult and time-consuming process.  Going to explain it in layman’s for you in case you may be interested!

There are around five options however only two options are currently available to me at the moment as I will be having seven weeks of daily Radio Therapy.  One is a tissue expander so basically when they take Chloe off they will fit an expander into my chest wall and will allow my skin to expand as opposed to close up after the surgery.  When I come out of surgery instead of having a big flat nothing there will be a small mound of a breast.  This then gets expanded over a couple of months with a saline solution which will pump the breast.  It was explained that implants don’t come in my size so will be a smaller size (no worries with that).  This same procedure is also available and it was mentioned some pig something or other was used but in this day and age with all the scandal about the horse meat thought this option wasnt for me.    Lisa was taking notes and making oink oink sounds as if to say ehhh not that option thanks.  With the way I am doing it basically when it comes to Radio Therapy there is no way of knowing how the new expanded boob will react its hit or miss and a lot can go wrong.  Most people wait til after Radio Therapy  (six months after) to get this done – me I am too impatient and yes there is a huge fail rate with people having Radio after.  However I am going to go for it and am not going to think of a fail rate gonna thing that this is gonna go really well for me and will come out of it with new boob intact.  If it doesn’t work then its back to doing it five months after Radio where then you can also have the option of doing it from the fat in your back, or doing it from fat in your tummy (tummy tuck).  Both are very big operations and recovery time is at least six weeks and a lot of scarring.    In a nutshell, operation at same time fit expander, go back to hospital few visits to pump it up, radio therapy 7 weeks, insertion of implant two months after, three months after Fiona gets a hoist to fit the new one, two months after new nipple for the new one…… the nipples are drawn on as tattoos…. think I am gonna have a tatoo…..not sure yet what…. was thinking of a wink smiley.

Hope your still awake got a bit technical but some people will find it interesting I think.  Lisa and myself decided let’s go for the first option and go with the flow, thinking positives and no piggy promises.   We confirmed it all over lunch in O’Dwyers and no we didn’t go for the BLT.

On an entirely different note there is a beautiful little six-year-old girl living near me,  as pretty as a princess and her name is Leah she reminds me so much of my little six-year-old.  Leah has a very very chronic cancer tumour growing in her brain and has 10% chance of coming through this via an operation overseas.  Her parents and family are desperately trying to raise the cash to send her overseas to give her this tiny chance.  Timing is crucial for Leah as it’s a matter of weeks.  I know times are tough but if you had a spare few quid to give Leah a chance her family would be so grateful.  You can donate online here www.idonate.ie/princessleahfund .  There is also a Facebook Page set up to show how you can help with fundraising for Leah http://www.facebook.com/pages/Princess-Leah-Fund/430734863663282  Thanks in advance for your genorosity I cant even imagine the above scenario for my princesses.

Good things that happened this week

  • Second Last sickness from chemo finished
  • Lisa came with me to appointment was great
  • Lovely Sunday roast with Simone and Gary
  • My Mam is out of hospital and recovering
  • The Surgeon and Plastic Surgeon have agreed to my operation so it’s all systems go!
  • Got a cheque instead of a bill in the post
  • Got operation date and decided yeah bugger it let’s go with the immediate recon
  • Made some new funny FB friends
  • Jumping in car later to visit friends  Grainne and Mary Cunningham  childhood friends you cant beat em.  Happy Birthday Mary will be picking up the fire-fighting stripogram lads en route

Jesus nearly forgot very important having a booze up see details below it’s a Tumour Party its a free for all its in a big pub and band is playing – if you would like to come and raise a glass would love to see you there. 13th April :-)  If your on FB and you can make it please respond here http://www.facebook.com/messages/#!/events/130631287115744

Thats it folks thanks for reading if you got this far.  Grab your precious children give them the biggest hug ever and tell them how much you love them.   Glow with happiness as they are healthy and beautiful.  Bring them out in the sunshine :-) :-)

 

 

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7 Down – Now only one more chemo to Go! WhooooHaaaaa

Well my friends WE are seriously Kicking the Shite out of Cancer and yes I mean WE. Without sounding cheesy you have “lifted me up”. You know that feeling when you score a big point or a goal and your team-mates lift you up and you wallow in glory?………..well I don’t know that feeling as it never happened to me in sport anyhow ;-) However with cancer I am sure feeling it, one step closer on the near eighteen month cancer trail and I can feel you guys urging me on. Even when I am down its like a knack some of you have in saying the right things at the right time getting a stupid FB message when I feel like crying but ending up laughing.

Anyhow enough praising you all :-) Went in for second last chemo yesterday and it all went very smoothly and quite quickly this time too. Got to see the doctor straight away and did the usual trying to get the dress up over my shoulders and bra undone (keep meaning to wear a shirt that would make it a lot easier)…. even by looking at my boob she said “this chemo is really working for you I can see just by looking at your boob that the tumour has shrunk” music to my ears I can tell you. Then she did a physical examination and said “I am delighted at how fast this tumour is shrinking and yes I know what your next question is going to be” she got me on that one was going to ask, “if chemo is working so well could I not get some more of it and not have operation and not have to do seven rounds of radio therapy”. Doc said the tumour is shrinking rapidly which is FAB but the cancer is still there, as the tumour is shrinking well I could at this stage probably get away with a lumpectomy (this is where they remove just the lump). Considering that I am “well endowed” she said that if they did this basically my boob would be a mess with half of it cut away – so NO THANKS TO THAT. Was brilliant news that the bastard is shrinking, it looks like 23rd or 30th of April for the cutting of Cancerous Chloe, I am ready for it now probably be sad about it closer to the time – herself and Floppy Fiona have been together a while ;-)

A friend of mine from school Dairiona came into meet me and we had coffee.  I had been in school with Dairiona but we only met back up after nearly 30 years a few weeks ago due to cancer and the power of Facebook.  Dairiona also had breast cancer and is now doing great (doesn’t she look fab she was always the prettiest girl in the class!) - just goes to show you Cancer does have its benefits and its great to talk to someone who has gone through what you have.   My face doesn’t usually look that round gonna blame that on the angle :-)

Got hooked up nicely in the chemo room and started talking to Mary from Greystones who is now finished her Chemo treatments but now on Herceptin which she will take for a year (every three weeks) Mary is HER2 Positive where I am HER2 Negative which means no Herceptin for me.  I will have to take a drug Tamoxifen for five years after to help the reoccurrence 0f cancer.   It’s a long time to be on a drug and it seems to have a lot of side effects, I’m not the best at talking drugs when I should , I mean who gets pregnant at the age of 33and four months before their wedding!!!! DOH   Also meta lovely lady fom Leixlip who started here chemo withme the other day – she is quite like me and is ready to kick this crap.

Met a great lady later on in Chemo would say she was in mid 70′s and dressed every so trendy you could see she was a great character and a real decent Dub. We were chatting away and she was telling me she was going on a cruise to Egypt so she hoped this gobshite (doctor) was going to let her go. Then she told me that it was 8 euro extra for the porthole wasn’t sure what she meant – she more of less roared at me “for the Egyptian Cruise, I mean I don’t smoke myself never have done but Jesus if your going on holiday you should be able to smoke in your room” in this case the port-hole! It was her friend “Peggy” going with her – “she is great craic her husband came into a lot of money a while ago and never gave her a bob he gave loads to the children but not to her, then Peggy came into some money and she didn’t give the bastard any thing” at this stage she was cracking up laughing saying serves the penny-pinching bollox right. Could have talked to her for hours she was lovely, her husband had died and she had a partner since but she said “I couldn’t be bothered with men – sure I have my mates and they make me laugh more than anything.  Sure if you are with a man who doesn’t make you giggle dump him”

Drove home after Chemo to Clane usually stay at Featherstone Place however my Mam ended up in Vincent’s A&E with a kidney problem so two fine Featherstone women under the same roof.  All is well Mam getting out in day or two.

I must tell you about my great new eyebrows , I took a trip to meet Elaine an old friend who has a salon in Greystones UpToMyEyes.com was delighted when I walked in to see another old friend Ciara. We had a great giggle and a cuppa before Elaine got hold of my non existing eyebrows. You will see from the picture I basically had no eyebrows left. Elaine had just flown back from Singapore with this new technology which will be called Embrowdery these eyebrows are more or lest embroidered on to me and they will last one and a half years I was delighted. Elaine put a few eyelashes on me as well but could not put many on as they must have an eyelash to stick too which I don’t really have.  Ladies for you on chemo loosing your eyebrows or if you just want your eyebrows to look better give Up To My Eyes a call on (01) 287 2781 tell them I sent you :-)

I’m in good form so far after chemo spaced out from steroids and I have slept an average of two hours a night for the last I don’t know how may days and its seriously getting to me!   Last night however had five hours in a row :-) was then up at 4.45 dropping hubby and baby to airport to Sweden.  Hoping tonight I will sleep for Ireland, well actually the WORLD.   Will no doubt be sick for the next few days (it’s usually a week) and you know what??   I only have two more weeks of being chemo sick – I don’t care about the pain from the operation just want to get rid of this horrible “dragging” feeling.  So Happy Days!!

Good things that happened this week

  • Spa Break nearly confirmed 30th March for photo shoot with my sis
  • The sun made an appearance
  • I only have one chemo left
  • Holy crap just looked out the window and it’s snowing
  • Lovely card from my cousin Una
  • Meeting with Plastic Surgeon on Thursday to figure out how to get the new Chloe and pick the spirits up of Fiona :-)
  • My hair is attmpeint to grow back – a good few black ones and too many grey ons…
  • Hoping to have a Kicking the Shite out of my Tumour Piss Up – will keep you posted!

Have a great weekend everyone and remember if a friend asks you out and you have the dosh - GO OUT AND ENJOY, dont be lazy, enjoy friends we all need to take more time for them.

A friend of mine Phil Fitzgerald posted this for me – lovely song -hope you enjoy and have people like this if you are going to go through cancer.

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Finally its Fabulous February

Seriously didn’t January this year seem like it had 55 days instead of 31?  Such a boring and depressing month and the weather didnt help.  February at last and can see a few things budding….. is there a hint of Spring?

This chemo must have been the worst so far,  by Sunday I was totally wrecked and not sleeping wasnt helping either.  Every part of my body was in pain from head to toe could nearly feel the chemo eating away at the good and bad cells.  Monday and Tuesday the only thing I managed to do was drop the kids to school and the odd email and was in bed for both of the days.  Thanks to Ger who looked after the kids for me both afternoons I would be lost without you.  Even in the evening would try get up but after a while on the couch would find myself back in bed again.  Wednesday was another very long day and was really sad that day heard some terrible news that a lady I knew on Facebook that had been battling cancer for years had passed away.  It felt so sudden just to see it on her page the RIP notices.   Rest in Peace Gail you are now no longer in pain.

So a very morbid, painful and sad first few days.  Also within myself I am seriously looking like a rabbit caught in the spotlight and I don’t like it.  I look sick (I think I do, even though everyone politely says I don’t) it’s the whole no eyelashes thing that makes me look sort of naked and no eyebrows don’t help either but am getting pretty good at drawing.  Also starting to lose my toenails how gross is that ewwwww :-(  I look like the sick people who I flippantly commented on when I first started chemo when I went in all cocky with a full head of hair and a bag full of fight.  Hoping Elaine from UpToMyEyes gonna sort me out tomorrow and see if we can get some sort of lashes on me and a new pair of brows :-)   You might think it sounds very vain, I am not a vain person whatsoever but I do have an issue going around and looking sick – its bad enough feeling it but to have to look it too – no way Jose.

Picked up on Thursday and went to meet the lovely Anita from DolledUp to discuss the competition I won (which all of you helped me win thanks a million).  We had a lovely brekkie and basically I will meet their style and image person first in Dundrum SC and she will go through my style (which to be honest is non-existent)  what is good for me clothes wise, colour wise etc.etc. and I might be getting a loan of a Karen Millen dress for the photo shoot!  Then myself and my sis will go down to Dunboyne Castle for a day of pampering in our white robes, next morning the style team, photographer, make-up artist come down to the hotel and start “working” on me – wow how much fun will that be can’t wait.  I just hope myself and Mia are back from the residents bar before they arrive ;-)    Gonna make it a baldy photo shoot so I can remember a “moment in time” of this horrible and brilliant time in my life.  Anita was great and we were there for hours and had a great time.  We agreed we should do all of the above after chemo so I can feel my most fabulous :-)

A lady had contacted me through this blog and I have been in contact with her all week she had a mammo and biopsy on Monday and unfortunately she was diagnosed with Breast Cancer on Friday.  I feel so sorry for her having to go through this shit but as I told her it’s all doable and you have no choice.  Also I was telling her she will be overwhelmed with all the support she will get from family and friends just like I did and still do.  It just seems to be so rampant at the moment or maybe its just because I have it that I hear of so many other people who have it.  Once again ladies I implore you next time down in docs get those boobs out and get squeezed sure you might as well get value for your €55 doctors visit.  You don’t actually need to go to the docs do it yourself and maybe one of these lads could help  ;-)

Well folks I am flying again and feeling on top of the world I just love feeling well and so appreciate the good days.   Only two more chemos left now, my last one is on the 14th March so I reckon I have two more weeks of feeling like crap and then by the end of March I will be chemo and pain-free.   I am so looking forward to finishing chemo and moving right along with the rest of this cancer trail.  Hoping to go on a holiday with the family for a week or so before the operation somewhere sunny – kids at a great age now to go on holidays with :-)    Also gonna have a finished chemo big night out bash so if anyone is interested in coming and raising a glass watch this space.

Good things that happened this week

  • Won the Competition for a complete makeover thanks DolledUp and Emer Hynes Denton and all you guys for voting for me
  • Getting a lovely mass said for me from Gerry Ball
  • Received really cool Female gift book and card – thanks Dymphna
  • Lovely Lovely Daffodil pressie from a neighbour
  • The cutest Paddy Featherstone had his 1st Birthday
  • Met Anita from www.dolledup.ie and had lovely brekkie
  • I’m feeling goooooodddddd

That’s it folks enjoy this Sunny Sunday (NOT) and make love not war ;-)

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6 Down 2 to Go – and you know what it was Fun!!

On the road again to get my sixth bout of chemo, can’t believe I have been doing this for nearly four months now.   Even after my great news that everything was going the way it should be I was still melancholy for two days before chemo as I seriously dread going now, I hate the fact of knowing that I will be sick after it which is not being negative it’s just fact that’s the way it is :-(      Anyways onwards and upwards in the car with Rod that morning  and a bit of Maggie May.  When I woke up that morning Maggie my nine-year old had done some preparation unbeknownst to me there in the kitchen was a box of Cheerios, three glasses of water and a jug of water if they needed a top-up, three bowls laid out on the counter, three spoons in the bowls and in each bowl there was a hair bobbin – that made me smile its impossible to find hair bobbins in this house, any Mam with school-going daughters will appreciate that :-)

New Chemo Room

Got my usual tea and toast in Featherstone Palace en route and Dad dropped me down to Vincents.   Was looking forward to seeing the new chemo room in Vincents which is now in a completely different part of the hospital in the Nutley Wing.   First into the new waiting room and it was good-sized, bright and airy and wow it had a flat screen TV and they had done the seating arrangement in rows so you didn’t have to stare at the other sick people in the chairs (who didn’t want to be there or look at you either).   Within a few minutes got a call to go into chemo room to see my Doctor.   The new room is state of the art, there are very fancy chairs that you can play with the controls and go up and down :-) there is a good two foot between the chairs, it is bright, airy, it has your very own plug to charge your iPhone (big yeeha for me)  and the room is ubber state of the art.

My Doctor gave me a clinical examination (checked my boob) she said she was very happy with progress and she could feel that the bastard tumour was shrinking (my words not hers).  Music to my ears of course.  I told her that I had been feeling seriously hyper for the last two weeks and she said “yes I can see that you are hyper now” so she cut my steroids in half and told me not to take them the next day,  she said it’s not too good to be too hyper and the comedown could be pretty bad and effecting everyday life and sleep.  Sleep?  whats that I said I sleep around two hours a night so she wrote me out a prescription for sleeping pills (nice doctor :-) All in all a good start to the day.

Now time to get bloods done and find a decent vein for the poison to go through me.  I had a lovely Phillipino nurse trying the first time and when the needle was in me she was whispering “sweet Jesus let me in, sweet Jesus let me in” obviously Jesus wasn’t around at that time and after three fairly painful tries we gave up.  The next nurse came over and checked all the veins and spotted one at the base of my little finger which she thought looked good, she said “it might be a little awkward but this could work” I said “go for it you can stick a needle in my arse at the moment as long as it works”.    Ah sweet Jesus must have got home as she got in first time and hand got bandaged up as was a little awkward – happy days worst part over, time to nip down to the cafe as my bloods get “whooshed” buy the little air machine to the “blood people” for results.

Caffeine tasted as sweet as always and back up hour later, no bloods back yet so spent the time chatting to other people in chemo room.  At this stage I was still really hyper and had a blast with the other patients.  Its great talking to them as we can take the piss out of the way people react to us sometimes like the, head to the right side asking how you are, the people who tell you that they know someone who died of cancer but it wasn’t anything like yours and other little things like that which  we find amusing :-)  Was wandering around the chemo room hyper and feeling the love I sat first with an older lady from Cork asking how she was etc. I couldn’t really understand a word she was saying but nodded hopefully in the right places, then I sat chatting with an older Dublin man for a few minutes he was lovely and we had a nice chat about how we were feeling, how the new room was etc.etc.

A girl called Michelle had been in touch with me through this blog saying her partner was also in Chemo and to look out for him.  As I am a very good detective (like my brother) I figured going back through old chemos who he was – the guy with the Orange clogs….. well I walked down the end of the room and there was Mr Orange Clogs (Tim) in one of the chairs.  We chatted for ages and had a great laugh was so nice to meet you Tim and your very lucky having a partner like Michelle to look after you.   We were also discussing our Chemo Brain I swear it is real…. there are words that I just can’t think of and forget the name of, people’s names I can’t remember and someone asks me something and I just look at them blankly and ask them to repeat – so if I seem a bit dense its chemo brain it’s not my real brain :-)    I met the lovely Sinead who is now on Round 2 – and doing great go girl and loving the new hair style :-)    was kicked off that chair then I think and went and sat down with another three women.  Two women in having chemo and a daughter of one of the ladies we were having a laugh about wigs.  The older lady had a wig that didn’t fit her and I told her to go back and tell them as they cost a fortune (between 500 and 700 euro) she said she did but they told her to wear a cap underneath it, she then took out this really wooly hat that she says she wears under swear to God the three of us were rocking around the place laughing the thoughts of having that wooly hat and the wig on top.   The lady said sure feck it I couldn’t care less off with it all and the lovely baldy came out.

Finally time for my drugs (the nurses I think were glad to finally tie me down in a seat :-) ) no seat available so I got a bed down the end – happy days.   Got all hooked up got my anti sickness injections, then my half portion of steroids, then my three and a half hour bag of Taxol (my new chemo drug) think I crashed out on the bed for around 45 minutes or so which was great.   My friend Darina who I also met through here came in for a chat with me as she had the appointment in Vincents - great to see you Darina and loving all that lovely near hair – woohooo

Before I left realised my buddy Elaine was there (in the new room you can’t really see people without getting up and walking around) could hear her laughter - would know it anywhere so skidaddled down to her with my hooked up bits n pieces.  Funny after we left texted her to say I had left a hat, she kindly went all the way back up to look for it but it wasnt there, she told nurses etc. to ring me if they found it – was a favourite hat of mine otherwise wouldn’t have bothered with it.  Elaine called me after saying sorry and called next day to see if I had got in touch to find it – found it alright in my bedroom was never in my handbag in the first place think I wasnt just hyper was delusional as well.

Back to Featherstone Palace (less a hat I never had) had been a long day didn’t leave until 6.15 there was a lovely dinner on for me.  Roast Ham (my favourite), roast potatoes, turnips and carrots was lovely and nearly licked the plate.  Took it easy that night went to bed early and woke up I don’t know how many times during the night.   Had brekkie in bed in my Mams bedroom and we had a great ole chat :-) we relaxed and chatted for around two hours.

Well that’s it, sixth chemo done, two to go, heading towards the end of chemo thank God I seem to feel more and more tired after everyone.   Friday and Saturday were a write off and spend most of my time on the couch or bed trying to snooze, watching MadMen or just laying on the bed day dreaming – reckon I have another couple of days like this then I will be back up and at it :-)

Also looks like I am in good positioning to win the fabulous makeover at www.dolledup.ie/competition thanks all who voted and if you havent please do that would be great, afraid competitor number two might have 40 up her sleeve then will be in trouble.

Good things that happened to me this week

  • Was in contact with old friend Elaine Daly who is going to look after my brows and lashes for me (will keep you posted)
  • Am three-quarters the way through chemo
  • Met some great people
  • I didn’t lose my hat after all

The blog is a bit all over the place as is my brain at the moment but I don’t edit anything otherwise it wouldn’t be “me” if you get my drift!

Was thinking should really have an “I finished Chemo Party” as well as an “I Kicked the Shite out of Cancer Party” – what do you reckon?

Should I have an "I Finished Chemo Party"?

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All the W’s – Wow What a Week and Weekend – Whoop Whoop

Well its been an extremely busy week as a Cancer Chancer Chic :-)   Started off on Monday with the first hospital appointment for the MRI.  Met my lovely friend Alvy for lunch in Stillorgan first (as you have to do of course!) and Alvy kindly came to the appointment with me in Vincents.  Waited around an hour and “gently” reminded the lady that I had been waiting there an hour – got seen to few minutes later.  Lovely blue guna on me again oh I had forgotten how pretty they are.  Went in to get ready for the scan and then realised they needed to but a line in me …. oh no….the dreaded hunt the vein which is becoming increasingly painful.  All my infusions have to be given in the arm opposite my cancer so the left arm is the pin cushion she tried once with no luck (and it really hurt) then I asked can we not just use my right seeing as it wasnt chemo she asked a doctor and bingo it was okay and she got in first time.  MRI was no problem no Stairway to Heaven this time think it was Strauss couldn’t hear it with the noise of the machine which feels like you are lying beside a Jack Hammer – which by the way I have never done.    Done and dusted after 30 minutes in the machine and off we went!

Wednesday back in again for Mammogram and Ultra-Sound on Cancerous Chloe.  Donned the blue guna again and saw the nurse quickly (who was very nice) into the machine definitely designed by a man – the boob sandwich maker – well squished I was but it’s not painful whatsoever you just feel a bit of a tit :-)    Off then to ultra-sound which I didn’t realise I was going to have.  I was lying on a bed waiting to be seen and could hear doctors and nurses whispering outside, it’s a terrible feeling as you get paranoid thinking God are they talking about me and have they some news that they don’t want to hear.  Never found out about that thank God.  A lovely doctor did the ultra-sound which again was no bother at all just a bit “gooey”.   Another thing over with.

Friday was the big day for all the results and the meeting with the Surgeon and the Breast Cancer nurse.  To say I was hyper all week was an understatement.  I am not one to worry so wasnt really worrying about the results but maybe in my subconscious I was, as seriously was off the planet doing silly things, forgetting things, putting the frozen chips in the cupboard, nearly threw my iPhone in the fire instead of a log and other ridiculous things.  However was living on an average of three hours sleep a night and it was driving me mad!

Myself and Hubby went over to Vincents to get the news.  I was hyper again and he was a nervous wreck, it was huge news to be receiving and you are just hoping, hoping, hoping that its gonna be good news.  To be honest I had a good feeling going in that it was going to be good news.  How could it not be with so many people like you guys behind me, wishing me well and spurring me on.

The Doc said that I was progressing very well, the chemo is working, the tumour is shrinking,  he was going to maybe do operation earlier and not do the last three chemos but the Oncologist said I am responding “very well” to the chemo and advised I finish – I agreed whole heartedly and want to finish to shrink it even further.  I would really like an immediate reconstruction after operation – he said that he would be happy with this decision if the plastics Doctor was happy with that – so have an appointment to meet her in the next two weeks.  As I need radiotherapy sometimes it’s not possible to get immediate reconstruction so we will have to wait and see but Surgeon is behind me on it which is great.  Otherwise be nearly a year with my boob – dont fancy the thoughts of that and would be very unbalanced :-)

However the Best News is that he said that after my mastectomy that I would be CANCER FREE – I was a little taken aback and got him to repeat it and at end of meeting said “Okay so you are saying that after my operation the cancer will be gone” he said “yes”.  Sure how much better could that meeting have went?

Still a huge way to go with chemo, operation, reconstruction, radiotherapy for six weeks – but you know what I don’t give a rats arse – all I heard was that I will be CANCER FREE they can chop off anything they want as long as cancer is gone.   Needless to say the relief was just immense.  First person to call was of course my sis who was delighted.  Called my parents then and got totally overwhelmed with my Dad when I was telling him.  We decided to meet in our local O’Dwyers in Kilmacud for some nibbles and a drink.  I had two pints of Carlsberg (probably the best lager in the world) they were honestly the sweetest tasting pints of Carslberg I ever had.

Serious celebrations were to be had on Saturday at Karens 40th – off we went, Sinead O’Connor, Marge Simpson, Dr Seymour Bush and the Incredible Hulk.   When we went into the party a Cleopatra met us at the door and took our coats, a beautiful looking girl from America.   Cleopatra asked me is your name Deirdre and I said yes (of course) and she says Oh My God its great to meet you I read your blog – I mean how cool is that an American at the party reading my blog :-)

We had an absolute blast at the party such a laugh.  Great craic with Val, Steve, Helena, Karen, Andrew, Julieanne and Mark and so many others.  The ole Sinead look went down well it was the first time I was out in public bald and it didn’t bother me a bit – quite liked it actually.  However did have soot, brown eye shadow rubbed on my head to make it look like I had a little stubble!  We partied on til around 5am was great craic loads of fun people and very funny situations – Karen you have great friends and family – fair play to you for throwing such a brilliant party!

Good things that happened this week:-

  • Fecking great news on Friday
  • Lovely bottle of Pink Champagne from Simone
  • Brilliant Party (first time out in around six weeks)
  • You guys being so supportive
  • Its nearly end of January

Can I ask one more favour I know some of you have voted for me on www.dolledup.ie/competition if you havent and you had a minute could you go in and vote for me you just need to register first only takes a minute.  The prize is basically a huge makeover, spa break, photoshoot, restyling and so much more – I would love it.   Dont want to push you but preeety please for a Cancer person (you see the cancer card might work here).  The girl coming second keeps coming back up and kicking my ass.  I want to kick ass in this competition as well as cancer

I must say when I went into the meeting as I said earlier I was very positive and had a good feeling.  I have not even a miniscule doubt in my mind that you guys were all in there with me all those good wishes  before on FB, texts, messages – you really have no idea how great that all made me feel I felt so privileged, popular, loved and extremely grateful to you all for your support.   So please feel good that you have made me feel good.

That’s it folks back in Chemo on Thursday :-( but hey is working that will make it easier and its the new chemo room which is supposed to be much better!

 

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