It’s been a week since my last treatment and I feel a lot better. This time really took its toll. I can still feel slight waves of nausea every now and again but nothing compared to the last few days. I also find myself suddenly hit by tiredness and afternoon siestas seem to be a good fix for that.
Aside from the tiredness, definitely noticed a runny nose and cold like symptoms without actually having a cold. My blood pressure must be quite low as going up the stairs and getting up too quickly makes me dizzy. I’ll leave it for another 2-3 days before I go back to exercising.
Emotionally this time has been a roller coaster too. I’ve frequently felt fed up, and angry, riding the wave of ‘it’s not fair and nobody understands it’. I still find it difficult to get my head around undergoing treatment that won’t be measured at the end of it. It’s not like anyone is going to turn around and say: great, this has really worked, but I do understand that it will contribute to long-term goals. I’m due to have an appointment with my oncologist next Monday to no doubt discuss radio therapy again and I will also ask her about the efficacy of 3 vs 4 treatments. If one more treatment really adds to making a difference, I would like to see if we can at least reduce the dosage slightly.
Grateful that I managed to hang onto my hair. It feels like I’ve lost maybe 40-50% and I’ve noticed lighter, curly strands of hair falling out recently, which means that these are coming from the top and front of my head. So far it’s been a few hairs here and there and I’m hoping it’ll stay like that. Thank you cold cap! Other body hair is still growing, albeit at a slower pace. I guess most people wouldn’t notice the thinning but I know that it’s less bulky and I can really feel the cold on my scalp when I’m outside.
I’m continuing to go to weekly physio appointments to ensure the area is stretched and loosened while any cording is dealt with. Turns out that the budget through my private health insurance on these will soon run out, which means I’ll have to pay cash for these sessions. In parallel I have asked my GP to refer me to the NHS for physio but having spoken to Lewisham Hospital, the actual process of getting people onto the system can take up to 2-3 weeks and according to the woman I spoke to my case wouldn’t be considered ‘urgent’ which might mean the earliest session I could have could be in 8 weeks time. Oh, thanks!
I’ve also started to go back to acupuncture and found a lady who’s only a 10 minute walk away. My friend sees her and really recommends her. I had a good session with her yesterday during which she worked on nausea but also specific points to help my liver along during this time. I think I’ll continue to see her rather than Andrew who of course is brilliant but is an hour away.
I’ve decided to make more of being in London by trying out different courses. So last night I attended one of three ‘healthy cooking’ courses at the College of Naturopathic Medicine. Great session learning how to make almond milk from scratch, a healthy muesli pot that can be eaten over several days, beetroot humous and more.
With the end of chemotherapy in sight, I’ve also booked a one-way ticket to Barcelona in the week leading up to Easter. What a great feeling to book a flight again, almost a tearful moment and I’m so looking forward to getting out of the country for a few days to enjoy the sea, sunshine, food, friends and a different scenery.
In the meantime, my mood seems to have lifted from the last few days and I’m enjoying things again, I can feel enthusiasm and motivation returning. Had a great start to the day by booking a breakfast meeting at the Shard. As usual with these venues, part of the menu is actually reasonably priced (when there’s no alcohol involved). Great way to start the day and it was a stunning morning to be above London!