Dear Cancer I’m not ready to Die

I hate writing this. But this is how I am feeling at the moment.

With tears in my eyes and an ache in my heart.

I think about who I would leave behind

I dread the thought of being told that I am going to die.

I have always feared death. Always cried about dying. Having children made it all become a little bit more real.

Having Cancer has made it all the more real for me. It has made me think more and more of death.

Right or wrong. Positive or not. You can not allow your brain to not think of it.

I have three beautiful children who I adore so much. I have so much to give them. So many more memories. So many more cuddles and kisses.

I want to be able to see them grow into handsome young men.

I want to see them graduate from University

I want to hold their hands through the good and the bad.

I want to watch them fall in love and enjoy life

I want to watch them walk down the aisle and I want to hold my grandchild in my arms

I am not ready to die.

I am not ready to leave my family behind to cope with me not being around.

I have so many more bumps and bruises to kiss better

So many more bedtime stories to read.

So many more experiences to enjoy with my boys

Death is a horrible thing and I know we all will die eventually. This has always scared me. I’ve always been upset about leaving my children, young or old, behind.

Coping with having Cancer has made it all real.

I am not ready for my body to give up. I am not ready to leave my boys without a Mummy.

Why am I writing this? I don’t know. Its how I am feeling. It’s what I am thinking.

It’s in my thoughts all the time. I don’t want it to be there. I want to enjoy the time I have with my family.

So many people tell me to enjoy my life, but It’s so hard. Cancer takes over.

I want to take control of my thoughts and body. I do not want it to win.

Am I feeling down? Am I depressed? YES

I want to be healthy and I want to live a long and good life

I want my children to enjoy growing up with their Mum around to guide them and teach them right from wrong. What Mum wouldn’t?

They need a strong Mum and a happy one.

I will carry on fighting with every inch of my body for the sake of my boys. I will try to keep strong and not allow them to see the weak me, the depressed me, the unhappy me. I will not let this defeat me without giving everything I have.

 

 

 

 

 

Bowel Surgery My Story Part 1

It’s been a long, hard struggle, but fingers crossed I’m on the road to recovery.

I was admitted into hospital last November 9th, for a scheduled bowel removal operation. I was in good spirits as i arrived to the hospital at 7am in the morning. I had my suitcase packed with a few essential items of clothing, magazines, books and a few snacks for the evenings whilst I was in hospital. I was due to stay in for 7-10 days but all depending on the rate of my recovery. I was told by my surgeon that there wasn’t many risks to the surgery for someone as fit and healthy like myself.

As I laid on the hospital bed waiting to be called into theatre, my surgeon came by to see me, I was in a positive mood and was hopeful that my surgery would be a success. I had tried hard not to think too much about the surgery but had researched the type of surgery I was having. I knew that my rectum was going to be removed as the tumour was sitting on the sphincter muscle, which meant if the rectum was left intact then I would not be able to control when I wanted to release my stools. My surgeon shook my hand and told me that I was first into theatre. I got dressed into my gown and had a last minute trip to the toilet before being wheeled into theatre.

I remember the lights were so bright, everything seemed to be gleaming. I remember sitting on the edge of the bed in theatre and the nurses and anaesthesist running around me, all doing something important. They all seemed to be really busy and I was just sitting there like a little lost lamb. Not sure what to do or say. I remember watching the nurses gather together the surgery tools, placing them onto a trolley, all lined out in a specific way and thinking how shiny and sharp they looked. I took a bug gulp. A deep breath and closed my eyes. I thought about my children at home and how they would be feeling today, how they would wake up and notice mummy not there. I remember a nurse coming over and fitting in a cannula to my hand and a needle into the base of my back (I believe this was an epidural, but I’m not sure). I remember the anaesthesist commenting on how calm and collected I was. How I seemed to be composed and ready. I didn’t feel it. I was then told to lay down. And that was it. I can not remember anything more until I woke up 6 hours later

I was in a different room this time, different people running around me. There was a nurse sitting on a chair next to my bed. When I opened my eyes she asked me how I was feeling. I felt fine. I felt no pain. I felt OK. I didn’t want to look down at my tummy, I didn’t want to see what they had done. I remember feeling hungry and thirsty so the nurse went and got me a yoghurt and some water. It felt so good to eat it.

I had a catheter to help drain the bladder of urine. I also had a colostomy bag on the left hand side of my abdomen. I had a drain attached, coming out of my bottom collecting blood/fluid. I also had 3 little incisions where they had performed a laparoscopy to remove my rectum and lymph nodes.

My parents had come with me to the hospital that morning and I hadn’t seen my Mum since they wheeled me down to theatre, I wanted to let her know I was OK. A nurse told me that My parents were waiting outside in the waiting room and wanted to know how I was. I wanted to see them but they wasn’t allowed through to the recovery room. After an hour or so they were allowed to come through and see me for a quick cuddle and to see how I was. It was good to see them, I held them tight

At about 6 in the evening I was taken upstairs to the surgery ward where a bed was waiting for me. I don’t remember much, I was very tired and kept drifting in and out sleep. Paul was with me and then it was time for him to go home. I didn’t want to be on my own. I slept. I awoke in the middle of the night in immense pain, screaming out to the nurses for help. I can not describe the pain but I remember it being so strong, I was crying. I wanted it to stop. I don’t even know where the pain was coming from, I just know that whatever the nurses gave me it wasn’t strong enough to take it away.

I don’t when, but they hooked me up to a PCA (patient controlled analgesia) where I was in control of when I administered morphine for the pain by pressing a button. This way I was able to control my pain whenever I needed to.

I don’t remember when I got up and out of bed. The days went by in a whirl. I slept so much. All I wanted to do was sleep.

I asked the nurses if I could get up and walk around but they said that I needed to be assessed by the physiotherapy team first.

I remember asking to get out of bed so I can sit in the chair. One of the nurses helped me out and then just as he was walking away I remember feeling really weak, sweating and then nothing. I must have blacked out. The next I remember was being carried into my bed and being hooked up to a saline drip. I believe that my blood pressure was low and that is why i fainted after getting out of bed.

I wanted to try again. I wanted to get better. But I was so scared I would faint again. I felt weak.

Days went by and I was soon feeling stronger. I was eating and drinking but not enough. The food was horrid. Tasteless.

My parents came to visit everyday. My mum helped me wash and when I gained enough strength to get out of bed she helped my shower. I hated seeing myself in the mirror. Who was the person looking back at me. A thinner, weaker version of myself.

My boys came in to see me, but I didn’t want them to see me so ill and weak. My eldest son came to visit after school, on his way home. Most days he would just sit next to my bed holding my hand whilst I slept, other days we would talk about school and his brothers. I hated seeing the hurt in their eyes. I would cry when they went home. I wanted to gold them close but my wounds and stoma meant I couldn’t have them close to me incase they knocked the tummy.

Where my rectum had been removed I had been stitched on the bottom. I wasn’t allowed to sit on my bottom for longer than 10 minutes. It felt weird. I had to keep moving from one side to the other every half hour. Sleeping was uncomfortable. My pert bottom was gone and in replace was a disgusting looking flat piece of skin that covered some bones.

It took over a week for the stoma to start to work. I was told I was constipated and that I needed to drink more but I just couldn’t take in anymore that what I was drinking.  I was given an enema to help. My first stools were watery. I was taught from the stoma nurse how to change the bag and what equipment to use. It didn’t seem too bad.

I was told what I could and couldn’t eat. So much of my normal diet was a no go. I went off of food and could only manage a few mouthfuls at a time. I began to feel sick and started to throw up whatever I was taking in.

I wanted to go home so much. I wanted to be with my boys. I hadn’t seen much of them whilst I was in hospital. So when a doctor came round to see me two weeks after surgery and asked me if I wanted to go home, I obviously said yes. I knew I was being sick but if they thought I was well enough to go then I was happy to do so.

We waited around for the discharge papers. Two hours later I was sitting in the passenger seat of the car and ready to set off home.

Unfortunately the story doesn’t stop here. Read part 2 later on this week. 

Thank you for reading.

Mini Marathon Trials 29/365

It’s that time of year again when we stand out in the cold weather and watch our eldest boy compete for a place to represent his borough in the London Giving Mini Marathon.

He is quite lucky as he can choose between the borough that he lives and the borough that he goes to school in. 

Today he attended the trails for the borough that we live in. 

He ran well and yet again made us proud. I love watching him run as his passion for the sport has grown within him the past year. He has always enjoyed running but only the past year he has really enjoyed it. Taking himself out for runs after school and competing in a few races for his school and running club.

He managed to gain a place on the boroughs team today, so the next 1e weeks he will have to train hard if he wants to do well.

Chinese New Year Decorations 28/365

Today was Chinese New Year and as I am.not string enough for us to go into London to join in on the celebrations like previous years we made decorations at home and ate Crispy duck pancake rolls.

The boys sat and made brightly coloured paper Chinese lanterns and paper chains to hang around the house.

They also made little red enveloped which they place over the top of the doorway ready for mummy to put some money in for them.

Kung Hei Fat Choi

Have you been celebrating Chinese new year?

Golden Turmeric Tonic Anti-Inflammatory Drink

Brighten up your day with this nutrient packed drink. It’s not only refreshing but also good for your stomach, joints and aids digestion. The star ingredient of this tonic drink is Turmeric, which is known for its anti inflammatory and immune boosting properties.

It’s like sunshine in a glass. Ideal for those cold winter mornings, with the added ginger in the drink it gives a little warm kick to it. What’s great about this drink is that it can be drunk warm or cold.

This easy to make tonic is super healthy and tasty too. It makes a great addition to your diet giving you a boost of energy and is packed with natural healing ingredients.

Carrots: Rich in vitamin A which maintains vision. Cleanses the liver. Boost immune system. The Beta-Carotene is a major antioxidant

Oranges: Vitamin C for a healthy immune system. Promotes proper digestion. Protects the cardiovascular system

Turmeric: Prevents inflammation. Controls blood pressure. Prevents cancer growth cells

Ginger: Reduces pain and inflammation. Aids digestion process. Strengthens immune system. Assists in the death of some cancer cells

Lime: Anti inflammatory. Prevents fatigue. Balances PH

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Ingredients:

  • 4 Carrots
  • 2 Oranges
  • 1/4 Lime/lemon
  • Coconut Water
  • 1 Knob of Fresh Root Ginger
  • 1 Knob of Fresh Turmeric
  • 1 tsp Turmeric powder
  • Pepper to taste

Method:

Add all of the ingredients apart from the coconut water and pepper into a blender and blitz together. We used our juicer and threw the oranges and lime in with the skin on, this can give the drink a bitter taste.

Turmeric is a natural dye, so be prepared for all of your equipment and hands to be yellow/orange after.

Add as much coconut water that you want, depending on the consistency of the drink you want. Add some pepper to taste. Stir together.

Enjoy! It’s as simple as that!

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Kombucha The Living Tea 27/365

I recently treated myself to some drinks from Equinox Kombucha. They sell healthy alternatives to fizzy drinks. It’s organic, raw, unpasteurised and full of natural vitamins and beneficial bacteria.

What is Kombucha?

Kombucha is a fermented drink made from green tea, cane sugar and a live culture called Kombucha ‘Scoby’ (symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast) 

Green tea is amazing in itself for all of its benefits it gives to the body but mix it in with kombucha and you have something that is not only full of goodness but also tastes really good.

They do 4 flavours Original, Ginger, Wild Berry and Raspberry and Elderflower. With every bottle I drank I said that that flavour was my favourite, but I must say with my sweet tooth that the latter one is by far the best flavour.

These drinks are very tasty and refreshing.