What the doctor said

So I went to Nicosia today with my husband and two good friends.

Dr Katodritis is such a lovely doctor and has a sense of humour which I think is very important when having to deal with someone like me.

He said what I have obviously is very bad and I must start treatment immediately.  I go for a brain mask measurement on Monday and then start treatment full brain radiotherapy.  I take a chemotherapy tablet every day, cortisone, and anti emetics as well as anti seasure drugs too.  Last thing I want to do is end up rolling about on the floor.

I’m going to lose my hair.  I’m totally gutted about this even though I know its going to grow back so I’ll be off to get it all chopped tomorrow so the shock is gradual. I’ve always wanted to try something new so now’s the time 🙂

Life expectancy for me is a year. I have an incurable disease so I’m terminal now. Bollocks.  But doctor said I can get well soon and it depends on how well I respond to my treatment too.  So I’m staying positive even though I think I’ve been kicked in the stomach and my whole world is upside down. It’s so not fair. I have so much life in me. I don’t feel ill, don’t look ill, so why the hell am I ill?! I’ll fight it. With every thing I’ve got.

Not good news but miracles don’t happen over night.  I will have my miracle though. I will walk out of that oncology unit a miracle.

I went to try on some wigs after. Had a right laugh with my friends pulling silly faces and poses. Think the woman isnt used to people going in smiley trying on wigs cause they are gonna go bald from cancer. Sucky times. But you know me I make a joke out of everything. It can always be worse.

Once my treatment is over I will have to get re staged and hope its no where else in my body.

Here I come melanoma. I’m ready for you. I’m fighting you. I will be victorious.

I am going to live! Whoop Whoop

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Brain tumor

Just when you think things couldn’t get any worse.. they do.

I had another bad headache this morning so I decided to go the general hospital a&e to get some help and insist on a scan. I was soo poorly.

They put me on a drip and said they can’t bring my scan forward as I wasnt an emergency; I hadn’t been in an accident.. so my sister called my oncologist, whilst my mum yelled at the a&e doctor and said what if she’s got a brain tumour? will she be an emergency then? Anyway my oncologist spoke to the doctor and finally I was wheeled in for a brain scan.

Results are I have a brain tumor. 24.2×17.1mm in size in the frontal right side of my brain.

meet Charlie, my brain tumour

 

So this is Charlie. As I already used Bob for my drain I chose Charlie for my tumour, wouldn’t want to get repetitive now would I!

It’s not fair, I’m too young and I want more kids and I want to see my son roll his eyeballs at me when I shout LOVE YOU when I drop him off at high school. Hopefully they will zap Charlie to death, pump me with stuff that will make me go bald and look like something from a zoo and get rid of it and I will do what ever it takes.

For now I have to take cortisone tablets 3 times a day and something for my stomach. So I’m gonna be looking like a puffer fish before long.. yummy.

So once again, I am praying for a speedy recovery, to god, Buddy, Allah and all who are listening to my prayers. Friends unite and pray for me and all the other cancer sufferers out there and for gods sake STAY OUT OF THE SUN!

Wish my news was better.  Will find out more when I see my oncologist.

Results

I finally got a call today from my doctor, he said that its not good, he said that I will need treatment.  I asked if its radiotherapy and he said as that hasn’t worked they will need to find another way of treating it. 

Its bollocks isn’t it. After all the bus rides, the burns, getting fired and now I still have cancer.  How sucky sucky sucky sucky is that.

I want to shout obscenities, I feel like I’ve been punched in my stomach and my whole world has collapsed again. The whole world is happening around me and I just want to shout stop. I want to get off now. I don’t like this ride I want to go on another one please.

So I guess you can say that my melanoma is putting up a fight.  I wont give up though and I have more fight in me, and I refuse to let this beat me.

But for now I’m gonna walk around in a  haze, feel sorry for myself, be really really really pissed off and perhaps shout a few obscenities at the world. 

😦

Back to “normal”!

Well I am pretty much back to normal now. My armpit well and truly on the mend and pain is very minimal. I guess that’s to remind me I’m still alive! 🙂  I could have been lying in a hospital bed now with a drip in my arm instead feeling rather crap.

I’m going for a right boob scan this morning. I am hoping its all clear. But as I’ve found nothing myself I’m pretty sure all is well.

It has been a very strange time these past few months.  Being “normal” is strange for me. I go back to work tomorrow and I feel like I’ve been gone ages rather than just a couple of months.  So my first day back will be like starting a new job all over again until I get back into the routine. I’ve been there four years mind so it shouldn’t take me long to get the hang of it!  Although change isn’t my favourite thing I easily adapt to new environments. I wouldn’t have a baby if I didn’t!!

My son is the light of my life. Throughout this he has helped me the most.  Picking up from nursery after radiotherapy stopped me from ever feeling sad and recovering from my burns he kept me busy and took his first steps too! I love watching him walk now. Although tiring Its such an amazing accomplishment when your little ones start walking.  He’s getting very much like me.  Quite the tantrum if he doesn’t get what he wants haha

Did you know that whilst driving in your car you can get sunburned too! Just cause you think you are shaded in the car,  doesn’t mean you are safe.  My husband realised that. He will be more careful now.  I try to wear long skirts and protect myself on long drives.

I am hoping to organise a singathon or something along those lines to help spread awareness of malignant melanoma and raise money for PASYCAF who have helped me throughout all this.  So for those of you who live near by I will let you know so you can come and watch if you like.  I am also planning a night out to celebrate too! Whoop whoop!

Well, that’s it for me for now. Plus my latest and last armpit photo. Finally better. Yay for being better! 🙂

I will post again when I get results from scan.

Thank you for following my news! 🙂

Taken 30/08/10

I went for a swim

I went to the beach recently. My doctor said the salt water will do my wounds the world of good, so armed with factor 50, our umbrella which is UVP proof, some cold water and a whole other bunch of stuff you need when you have kids off we went.

I got into the water for a total of 5 minutes just to cool off and to salt my armpit up which of course stung as swimming was out of the question as my arm is out of practice and the muscles are still sore. I didn’t expect that.  I am not allowed in the sun my doctor said so I was quick to get out and sit under the brollie.  Everyone else was in the water and I watched alone from the side wishing it was me in the sea with my son, not being able to be in the sun isn’t the end of the world, but its the end of the world as I know it. I hate that I cant play in the water with my son but my melanoma is so high risk that I cant risk ever being in the sun again. How sucky is that!  However, its a small price to pay when I get to live a long and happy life.

I had plenty of time to watch everyone on the beach.  Quite a few had already burned and are in the peeling process, not many under umbrellas and I wondered if they all knew about what they could potentially being doing to themselves.  Some stared at my armpit and my back back and I wondered if I should tell them why I looked the way I did.

I didn’t of course, people on holiday don’t want to know about my fight with skin cancer or anyone elses for that matter. They are on holiday, in Cyprus to get a tan, that’s the whole reason they are here in the first place (well amongst other things of course).

I wish there was something we could do to make people realise how dangerous it is. But the magazines put models that are airbrushed with beautiful tans.  We all think being tanned is beautiful.  We have forgotten to love ourselves as god made us.

We watch arabsat and there are adverts on there for a cream called Fair and Lovely and its for people with dark and blemished skin to look white and pure.   Theres even one when someone turns a model away cause her skin was too dark but it turned out the window was dirty, cause she uses fair and lovely so she gets hired in the end!   I think thats quite racist to be honest, but there they are trying to look fair, and here  we are trying to look brown!

Going on holiday just to fry yourself in baby oil cause thats what you are doing if you use that isn’t the way to do it.  Don’t burn, always use a minimum of 30 in hot countries especially when its 38 degrees out there! You only have one skin. You cant get a skin transplant and once you have skin cancer you have it for life.  Many are lucky to live in remission, many die.

My emotions are still running high. I can be anywhere and start crying because I am so grateful to be alive, to be in remission. Adverts on TV with happy endings make me cry. I’m a blubbering mess… everything makes me emotional at the moment.

All in all I spent about 30 mins on the beach.  Days out on the beach or by the beach are now a thing of the past for me.  Lucky for me though, I do have a very well shaded pool in my garden which I plan to spend time in once my arm is healed as I cant swim in chlorine yet.

I will need follow up visits every three months at the Oncology Clinic for the next 3 years, then every 6 months to year 5 then every year till year 10. After that I don’t know.  But I plan to find out.. cant wait to moan about it when I’m 45! I’m going for another boob scan next week! Just my right one.. I wonder if my left one will feel left out.. ha mind you its rather difficult to keep one in in such circumstances.. lol

Live love and be happy. You only get one life so make the best of it. 🙂

My armpit and its progress!

Taken 22.08

All my new skin coming through.. all my old skin fried off! lol

New Results

So I got my results!  They took out a huge amount of fibrofatty tissue 4x3x3 and then further fatty tissue 10x8x6 .. my scales dont appear to agree as I still weigh the same! Anyway results stated: small rest 2mm in the axillary median wall of the previous diagnosed melanoma and axillary lymph node NEGATIVE for melanoma metastasis!  YAY and super YAY.

A very nice cancer nurse visited me today. I got a bit emotional as its easier to let yourself go when the person doesn’t know you as such.  Even though she has known my family for a long long time.  She very kindly changed my dressings for me as my side had leaked over night and was looking rather ikky.  Rachel is apart of the Cyprus Association of Cancer Patients and Friends. She gave me lots of leaflets to help me understand more about Malignant Melanoma and how to avoid getting lymphedema.   I have many dont’s for the rest of my life, like don’t drive the car without sun block and a full arm sleeve to keep the direct sun off my right arm!  I found a great site for that. They are cheap and deliver everywhere too!  I can’t lift heavy objects with that arm. And I when I fly I have to get a special compression sleeve too! Basically I am right handed but I have to teach myself to be left handed! lol   I’ve been given lots of exercises as well to help get the full movement of my arm back.  One involving a squishy ball provided by the Europa Donna Cyprus.

After I called my oncologist who suggested I wait till Friday to see him in Paphos which of course I refused and requested I see them in Limassol tomorrow which he agreed too.  I do not want to wait for my life to happen! I want to see what I have to do to make sure cancer does not knock on my door again. Ever.

So until I speak to him about results I am not quite sure again whats next. A lot of that happens so you have to be patient with that.  Try to keep yourself busy with movies and reading books.  That has helped me along side with friends that have visited too.  Some may not know what to say or do, so ask them round rather than wait for them to show up!  The others that really know you will come anyway but some need an extra push! 🙂

So its been a good day for me.  I was able to release some locked up emotions which is very important and I got good test results.

Next step, get treatment if offerred, get rid of Bob, fix arm and move on with my life!

🙂

Doctors that mess you about

My oncologist sent me to Nicosia today to see a plastic surgeon. He said that he’s the chap that knows about Melanomas.   When I spoke to my original surgeon, he said, why is he sending you to see him? They are plastic surgeons. They have nothing to do with lymph removals. He then spoke to my oncologist who said he was sending me to the plastic surgeon because surgery at the general hospital is free.

So off we went at 730am and got there for 9.  Surprise surprise when I got there no one was expecting me and when they finally saw me at 11 they told me “we dont do this kind of surgery, your doctor must have got confused when he sent you to us”  arghhhhh (I waited a WHOLE week to hear this!)  He said they can refer me to a surgeon at their hospital but I’d have to make a new appointment and there is a waiting list for surgeries.  So they suggested I come back to Paphos and see a surgeon here.   I said stuff this, and spoke to my first surgeon and agreed to have the surgery tomorrow morning in a private clinic! I just cant wait any longer as its too dangerous.

Can’t eat or drink anything from midnight onwards.  So I am having a cheeky vodka now.  I’m not going to fight the toxins in my body by putting more in so really once I’ve had this surgery I will have to be even more careful about what I eat and drink.

Then again, you can say you only live once, which is very true and you should totally live every day doing things you want, but that doesn’t mean that booze and parties are the way to do it. Not at my age anyway haha

I know that tomorrow they will take out all my lymph nodes and melanoma. The sad thing is is that you are never quite free of melanoma. It can come back again and again.    This is why I have to try to eat healthier and take care of myself more, because I only get one shot at life and I will do whatever it takes to live a long one..

So here’s to positive thinking and here’s to step two of my battle to beat this son of a b***h 🙂 oh and to giving my oncologist a big earful for sending me on a wild goose chase and wasting my very precious time.

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