Saturday, 12 January 2013

Cars, scans and making plans

This week has been a bit of a mix. First of all - we got a new car, yes it's exciting but I ending up crying as my lovely bright red coupe was part exchanged for the new one. It felt like I was saying goodbye to the old me. Unfortunately I now need a car for comfort and not for speed. The coupe was low down, very sporty and very fast. So unfortunately it had to go. Which brings me on to my hair, I know that in the next fortnight or so it will be gone. Yes I will have a lovely wig, and people won't know. It still doesn't take away the fact that I will be bald. I've tried to keep my spirits up, I've taken photos of myself in different colour wigs and shown the kids, I've tried on different scarves and hats. I just think that when I get through the initial shock of my hair falling out, I'll be fine. In the meantime - I'm sorry but I'm going to have a little rant here. I don't need people telling me to shave it off so I can get used to it. I've had quite a few people suggest this to me - none of them I may add have ever been bald before or had cancer, so they couldn't possibly know how I feel. Quite frankly if I suggested to them to shave their hair off, they would be mortified at the thought. So please, please lovely well meaning people, leave me to know what to do when the time comes. I have spoken in great length about having no hair and going bald to my husband. I asked him if when the time comes could he shave it off. Up until yesterday he told me he couldn't do it. Then when we were up at the hospital we saw a lovely lady around my age who came up and spoke to us as we came out of the Macmillian Primrose unit. She asked if I was going to start chemo soon, we had a long chat, her wig was superb and she looked fantastic.  She told us that she was at the end of her treatment and that she worked all through it - which I was pleased to hear. Incidentally her treatment was the same as mine. She told us, amongst other things that her hair started falling out around 10 days after treatment - but it was not instant as Dr Smith my oncologist had suggested it would be - Yes I know everyone is different. Anyway, she got fed up with it coming out in clumps so she shaved it off. This lady lifted mine and Andrew's spirit's considerably so much so that last night Andrew told me that he couldn't bear to see me like that and he would shave it off for me. We had a cry as even though he cannot understand how much my hair means to me, he hates to see me so upset over it. I'm sure when the time comes, I will grieve for a while and then make the most of all the new wigs I plan on buying.

Now that I'm up and driving again I did suggest to hubby that I could take myself to all my hospital appointments. However, yesterday and Wednesday he drove me to the scans that I had. Wednesday's scan was the polo mint scanner or a CT scan, I've had one of these before so I knew what to expect. Dye is injected into my arm and I am sent in and out of the polo mint with my arms in the air. In this case it was one arm, as I am still not able to lift my right arm up that far for that length of time. The dye goes in to your arm when the scan starts and you feel really hot in certain areas, basically it feels   like you've wet yourself - not attractive but quite painless and it is over before you know it. The scan that I had yesterday was the one I felt a bit wary of as its called a Nuclear Medicine Whole Body and Bone Scan. Basically it scans from the top of your head to the tips of your toes. Again I was given an injection this time it was a radioactivity injection, which was administered a few hours before the scan took place. The injection itself wasn't enough to launch me at a small country, but enough to go around the whole of my body and highlight anything that looks mysterious. This scanner came with its own armrests, and leg rests. Millions of pounds worth, It has two large square like scanners either side of the main scanner both of these fit above and below your body and slowly glide up and down. I had to laugh when I was told that an elastic band had to be placed around my feet to keep them together, however after 20 minutes trying to keep absolutely still, the elastic band did its job. The radiographer stayed with me most of the time rubbing my arm and chatting about everything and anything including our kids. I asked him if he would as I felt quite claustrophobic. As the time ticked by and the scanner did its job he explained everything that was going to happen step by step, thank God he did because at one point I thought I was going to be decapitated. This scan like the one on Wednesday was soon over and I was told Dr Smith would let me know my results of both scans shortly.  I won't pretend that I have not thought about these results a million and one times, I try not to,  but I will admit that since I have been diagnosed this is just something else to worry about and which I've had nightmares and sleepless nights over,  thinking " What if  its spread".....I know that what will be will be, and no amount of worrying will change the end result. However, all I can do is hope and pray that it is contained.

After visiting Rachel my breast care nurse and having a cuddle, we spent a couple of hours walking round shops trying to kill a few hours, before heading back and seeing Mr Javaid my plastic surgeon. This man has done such a fantastic job on my breast, that I nearly cried when we first into his office, he told me how lovely I looked and then he asked me ( and Andrew) if we were happy with my new breast. I told him how over the moon I was. this was after he has shown Andrew how he should give me a breast massage! Surreal! He also suggested that I should have a slight lift on my other breast so that they matched, along with a new nipple. This man is a miracle worker. I suggested he must love his job - he and Andrew smiled in that - silly school boy way. As I further explained - I didn't mean playing with breasts all day, but making women happy by giving them back their breasts? How wonderfully fulfilling it must be. As we left his office smiling and happy, Helen the nurse told me that the work he had done on my breast was the best she had ever seen.

So here we are - next week I should get my results then on Wednesday I am at Addenbrooks having my PICC line put in - which incidentally Andrew and I watched a video of on You Tube. Looks harmless enough............Then the next day on the Thursday it is my first chemo session...... So all in all another hectic week. Still it keeps me busy and out of trouble.

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