Chemo Catch-up, etc.

Sep 07, 2017

Since the last post I've finished chemo, the kids have had their school holidays, we've been on our highly anticipated family summer holiday and Imy has started a new school.

For some reason it’s harder to write the blog posts now than it was when I was dealing with my Primary diagnosis nearly 4 years ago. I don’t know if it’s because I’ve done a lot of it before, fatigue, or general “Cantbearseditis”.

Since the last post, I’ve finished my course of chemo and am now completely bald. To be fair, there’s a little bit of fluff, but not much. I got to ring the End of Treatment Bell at the hospital - very exciting!. It was a bit of a cheat really, as although I’d finished the course of 7 sessions of chemo, I will still be returning to the unit every 3 weeks for Herceptin, Zoledronic Acid and Perjeta. Technically my treatment will never end, so I took this opportunity to ring that bell!
(Note the hat, I crocheted that myself out of bamboo yarn!)

In late July, Imy finished primary school. She’s not going to the same secondary school as the majority of her old classmates, so during the Leavers Assembly, she got very tearful. There was lots of hugs and love being shared. Later on in the day they all got together at our local Muddy Obstacle Arena, where they had one last blow out together which involved lots of water, mud, laughs and daftness. It was a great way to end her time at a lovely school. A school that holds lots of fond memories and which has supported her when she needed supporting the most.

Fast forward to Tuesday this week, and she started secondary school. She has to get up just before 7am (she’s not a morning person) so she can catch the train there. The majority of her primary school classmates decided to go to the local secondary school, but Imy preferred the Girl’s School, the downside being a longer commute. Ross accompanied her on the train on her first day, her friend’s mum went with them yesterday, and today they went by themselves - armed with their travel passes. Already so independent! They get the 7:54am train in the morning, walk for 15 minutes from the station to school and then return home at about 4:10pm in the afternoon. So far, she’s loving it, making lots of new friends, and enjoying the new experiences. Long may it continue! I really do think it’ll be great for her and allow her to unlock all the potential she has.
New School
During the summer holiday’s we tried to continue as normal, and the kids had a lot of free time whilst I recovered from the weekly chemo sessions. They went on a rugby camp, spent a few days with their Granny and Grandad Lawley, and saw their cousins which was fun as it involved sleeping in a tent in Uncle Rich’s garden!
My Dad and Julie came down for a visit, and amongst other fun things, took the kids out to the zoo, and to the local trampolining centre. Dad also did a few bits of DIY that Ross hadn’t had time to do.
Then before we knew it, we were off on our holiday to Portugal! We had thought about cancelling it when we got the news of the cancer spread, but my Oncologist said he would work the treatment dates around it, and that it would be best all around if we went on holiday. Doctor’s Orders!

I’m so glad we went. We’d rented a villa with it’s own pool, in the middle of no-where on the Algarve, about an hour away from Faro through James Villas. We hired a car and therefore we were on our own timetable, could eat when we wanted, go in the pool when we wanted, explore if and when we wanted, and it was a resounding success. We all had a great time. A lot of time was spent at the villa, just relaxing (and swimming). But we did go out and about to have a look at a few beaches, look at some tourist shops, ate out a few times and navigate around a huge hypermarket, marveling at the local delicacies…chicken toes anyone? It was a fabulous holiday which we will remember for a long time to come.

Portugal Holiday

I think that brings us up to date. The day after we got back, I was back on treatment, and this afternoon I’m off to have an MRI to see if the chemo/Perjeta has made any difference to the two new spots. Fingers crossed!