I had my 23rd session of radiotherapy yesterday, which leaves five more to go. It’s the Final Countdown. Naturally, I’m hoping that I’ll make it to the finish line without any last-week dramas, but history has taught me not to count my chickens before the last zappy sings*.
After yesterday’s zapping, I had my weekly catch-up with one of the Specialist Nurses. Among other things, she examined my scalp, asked if it was itchy (which it isn’t) and gave me a moisturising cream to use to make a pre-emptive strike against any irritation that might arise. She specifically said to use it in the evenings and not in the mornings before radio. Of course, as my scalp is not currently causing me any discomfort, I completely forgot all about using the cream until 6am this morning so I didn’t remember to put it on last night as advised. This comes after years of me haranguing Mr C about his apparent belief that acquiring a cream and keeping it relatively near to him in a box might well provide some sort of miraculous cure for his eczema….
I have an appointment with my oncologist on Monday morning. Dr M will specifically:
- consider whether the current steroids dose is required/appropriate and if there is any scope for it to be reduced (taking into account the seizure-complications for which I was prescribed them by the neurologist);
- confirm whether a post-radiotherapy scan is necessary – it’s not carried out as a matter of course because even the detailed MRI scans are fuzzy and hazy post-zappage due to the swelling surrounding the radio target(s), making it difficult to see/interpret what’s going on in there and whether the radiotherapy has been “successful”;
- explain the specific details of the chemotherapy (including likely/possible side effects) and ask me to sign on the dotted line of consent; and
- confirm whether I will, as she had originally planned, start the first cycle of chemotherapy four weeks after the end of radio.
Out of the Icy Den and Into the Fire
So far this week, I have joined the other people of the house for two meals at the table, the first time since Christmas Day that I’ve eaten outside of the Ice Bar. I also had lunch with my three carers at Marks and Spencer’s cafe at the Metro Centre on the way home from radiotherapy. Each was brief but lovely and, importantly, I didn’t overheat or have any Seizfeld episodes during or immediately after any of them.
Last night, I spent some time in the living room chatting to Ma and Pa. I had shorts and a vest top on (I have literally worn more and felt cooler in the middle of Summer in Africa than I am wearing in the Ice Cube these days) and, admittedly, the wood-burning stove wasn’t on, but it was still a good 10 degrees warmer than in my Seizer Freezer. Happily, I didn’t have any Seizlings post-natter, even though I had experienced three throughout the day/early evening.
Straight from the Daughter’s Mouth
This morning Jennifer was cuddled up under the duvet with me and said she’d slept well last night. I asked her if she had had any good dreams and she said, “I dreamed that you and me went to softplay when you’re better, Mammy”.
Here is Jennifer’s first contribution to the blog:
So we have Mrs Verbose, Mr Brevity and Little Miss Emoji.
*The Spaceship in Room 6 doesn’t so much sing when it zaps but rather sounds like a warbling drone. The counterparts in Rooms 4 and 7 each sound like a warbling drone strangling a cat.