Operation Duromine

I’m Fat.

Not just fat. Obese.

According to the BMI chart anyway.

So, enter Duromine.

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What’s Duromine? Well, in simple terms, it is an appetite suppressant. Less food, apparently, will make me less fat.

At $98.00(Aust) a script, which lasts one month, it had better bloody work. Thankfully, my health insurance covers $57.00 of it so that really works out to about $1.36 per capsule, which I take one a day. That isn’t bad really when you think of the cost of snacking and excess eating. I am actually saving money by being on this stuff.

So, I started the ‘wonder drug’ 7 days ago and am taking the lowest dose possible being 15mg. This is because it can interfere or react with Tamoxifen. I take this tablet each morning at about 5:30am with my breakfast of a tuna and baby spinach wrap. I find no urges to eat until lunch time and even then, I have to remind myself that I need to eat. Lunch is something simple like a small fruit salad and yoghurt or a tin of tuna with a small salad. Dinner is something like a small seafood stirfry with brown rice or a piece of steamed fish and veg.

How have I done in the 7 days?

I have lost a grand total of ZERO!

Yep, not even a hundred grams. A big, fat, round zero.

At least my lack weight loss matches my body shape.

Ok, so this week hasn’t been very normal with having surgery on Wednesday (which I should have lost 5 bloody kilos because I fasted from 7:30am until 7pm!) and have had a sneaky glass of bubbles or two but seriously, come on! Nothing? Not one little gram of weight loss?

I shall not give up though. This stuff is going to work. I already feel better being on it because of the reduced food intake.

Are you curious about the side effects? So many people have an opinion on Duromine weather they’ve taken it or not.

These have been my side effects.

  • Dry mouth (water fixes it everytime)
  • Slight headache in the first couple of days
  • Vagueness (said good morning to the same person twice one day)
  • Tiredness in the first few days

Obviously, each person is different with medication and side effects but these have been mine which I was quite pleased about.

Lets Not Judge Amanda Bailey.

I thought a lot about writing this blog about being on Duromine because, as a society, we love to judge people. Put them down for whatever we can. Does it really make us feel better to do this? Does it improve our own lives to judge and gossip about someone else?

My answer is no. What’s your answer?

I decided, obviously, to write this because I feel I have been honest and transparent since I began this blog and for anyone who ever read my previous blog called I WOKE UP FAT, will know that I am probably a bit too open at times.

My fat life started approximately 9 years ago. Initially, I thought it was due to being diagnosed as a coeliac (allergy to gluten) and I still feel this has a big part to being a big girl but also, as my relationship with Sam progressed, so did my weight gain.

The meals I ate were often the same size as Sams meals. This is not healthy! I should not be eating the same amount as a grown man who does manual labour for a job. I am an office worker perched on my bum all day.

I did spend a year at the gym a few years back and had very good success in losing 18 kilos. It meant I was at the gym 5, sometimes 6, days a week, my diet was impeccable and I was motivated.

Once I had gone from being 95 kilos (Yes, 95 whopping kilograms) down to 78 kilos, it all stopped. My weight loss journey seemed to be over. Try as hard as I did, nothing was budging.Β  Then, as happens with many people, I got frustrated and fed up and GAVE UP.

Fast forward a couple of years and whilst I haven’t gained all of that weight back, I have gained a couple of kilos and am still very fat. I am only five feet tall so, carrying more than say, 60 kilos, is a lot of weight for a little person like me to carry.

My starting weight, 7 days ago, was 81.9 kilos. Wow, I am putting it all out there aren’t I? How many of you would happily put your weight and age out into the big wide web for lots of little judgemental gossipy eyeballs to read?

So anyway, I am on this Operation Duromine to lose weight for the upcoming surgery being my breast reconstruction. It is a short term ‘fix’ and my fingers are crossed it works. I am hoping to have this surgery in January, 2017.

Obviously walking wasn’t going to do it because after breaking those couple of bones in my ankle and leg, it made walking a wee bit tedious.

Oh, about that. The surgery on Wednesday went really well (they removed two of the pins holding my bones together) and aside from that huge long fasting session, it all went without incident. I did meet a wonderful lady in Recovery who is the sister of a work colleague. She was just gorgeous and caring and kind. Thanks for looking after me Mim.

Hopefully, I can start walking again comfortably and carefully to kickstart this weight loss that my surgeon, Dr Kollias, is adamant I must do. He would like me to lose 20 kilos prior to my surgery which not only will make me look and feel better but will also reduce my chances of getting breast cancer again.

This is not a ‘commercial’ for appetite suppressants but more a journal for me (and you if you are interested) to see how I travel with this weight loss stuff.

So from me, my big fat 0 weight loss, I bid you farewell… until next time xx

2007 V’sΒ  2016

Ps: The gorgeous lady in the photo with me is Author Tamara K Martin. Keep an eye on your bookshelves people, her writing will be out for you to buy and read soon πŸ™‚

 

Who Am I?

Well, I have given Sams head a break today and have not taken a bite out of it like I did yesterday. We ended our day with a gorgeous walk with the dogs and both of us felt much better for it.

Then, I had another night where I struggled to find tiredness. I read an entire book on Chickens that had been given to me by a lovely lady by the name of Sally. She is my mums friend and neighbour and has been absolutely lovely sending up bubbles, treats and books. Once I had finished the chicken book, I read a few chapters of a novel called “Odd Socks” which, thankfully, makes me sleepy.

I turned off my bedside light at 12:3oam!

Even though it took me a while to get sleepy, I did sleep well through the night until 7am. Then, my little peepers opened and I was wide awake!

I am never wide awake at that time. In fact, I am never wide awake at 10am! I got up and even Brady didn’t get up thinking I was going to go to the toilet and head back to bed.

Once he realised I was heading for the bedroom door to exit instead of heading to the ensuite, it looked as though he raised his eyebrows, he got up to head out with me.

Sam slept for a further half an hour which, is unheard of. So, when he got up and saw me at my computer desk, drinking my coffee, he was very surprised. Add to that, I was out in the street with my gorgeous Brady for a walk by 9:30am. Again, another unheard off…….

Today is day 9 without alcohol. Am I counting? Yep. It is a very difficult thing to give up for a stretch of time let alone during summer in Adelaide. There is nothing nicer than sitting out under the pergola with a nice cold glass of bubbles watching the sun set.

I am doing it though.

So, it seems this new alcohol free, reduced sugar intake, exercising person I have become now likes to wake up at the crack of dawn (7am is the crack of dawn for me) and get moving.

I have changed maaaaaaan.

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About my girls.

So, they have been with us for more than 24 hours now and they are doing well.

I was worried if they were drinking water because it is quite warm in Adelaide at the moment. When I popped into see them when I had gotten home from my future mother in laws house, there they were, all three girls drinking. πŸ™‚ This made me very happy.

Have you ever seen a chicken vomit? Well, I have. Today, after their big drink, Steffie Forrester ‘leaked’ out a heap of water from her beak. It wasn’t like a chunky vomit, just a heap of water but I think she might have drunk a little bit too much. Steffie and I have quite a bit in common.

She doesn’t stop eating and obviously, when given a drink, guzzles it too quick hehe.

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Before I leave, with my new healthy lifestyle, I have put on a kilo!!! ARGH!

Thinking of the year that was….

I started 2015 with a smile on my face. I was so happy and fortunate and loved.

Thankfully, I am ending this year with a smile on my face because I am happy, fortunate and loved.

Ok, there was a bump on the way.

We got over the bump.

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I have been made aware of so many things this year. The first thing being that Sam is there for me, through sickness and in health. He was there for me each and every day to ensure I was loved, fed, clean, medicated and positive. Sam made me laugh, took in all of the medical information, made learning about breast cancer his project and even sang silly songs to me. He drove me to each and every chemotherapy appointment, surgeon appointment, many of the radiation appointments and the endless trips to the chemist.

I have made new friends, been reunited with old friends, lost a couple of friends, felt the love of so many wonderful people. I have seen amazing and selfless sides of many people as well.

Naturally, I can’t name each and every person who has touched my heart this year but please know, you probably are one of them.

I started the year with two boobs, a head of long hair, a little lighter but I am ending this year with more knowledge, empathy, understanding and patience than I had at the beginning. I now know the amazing lengths people go to too help someone facing a very frightening illness. I have been incredibly fortunate to have an amazing group of people surrounding me.

I didn’t get cancer this year. I was diagnosed this year. According to my surgeon, the cancer had been in my body for a couple of years. I will not see 2015 as ‘the year I got cancer’ but it will be the year that Sam and I fought the disease in my body as far as I am concerned, we won.

The biggest standout of the year is pretty obvious to me. It was being told I had breast cancer. Everything that followed those words happened so fast and there was always something going on weather it was surgery, drains, those bloody dreadful and shitty hemorrhoids, nausea, fatigue, chemotherapy, baldness, radiation therapy, burns, blisters, but it was my ultra sound and mammogram appointment that I’ll never forget.

Do you make New Year Resolutions? I am a bit wishy washy when it comes to them but this year I have a long list of health related changes for my new year. Be warned, I am giving up alcohol. Blogs may actually start to make sense hehe.

There will be less processed foods, goodbye to sugar, hello to daily activity (I have the neighbours exersize bike in my lounge room ready and waiting), and I am going to smile a lot! I will continue with my positive attitude, growing salads and vegetables, drinking a lot of water and helping anyone who needs it.

This New Years Eve will be spent with our lovely neighbours at what I am hoping, will be the 1st of many street/neighbourhood parties.

My thoughts this year will be with health of my amazing family and friends, feeling proud of the amazing daughter I have, loving that amazing man of mine, drinking my last drink for a while and enjoying the fact I am here to celebrate another New Year.

Thank you to everyone for being with me this year either in person or in writing and your thoughts.

I wish you all a very Happy and Healthy New Year.

Much love………

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My Amazing Saturday

My amazing Saturday is thanks to so many people. I am imagining myself, right now, on a pedestal (this will not surprise anyone who knows me) giving the speak on a particular day of the week that was amazing.

Lets start with Saturday morning.

Well, I lay in bed until 11am due to a kick arse hangover thanks to Brady. He didn’t know when to tell me when to stop. So I drank and drank and drank and he said nothing. He just loved me like he always does.

Here is Brady for those of you that don’t know him.

IMG_0003I am posting this photo because he is not aloud on the sofa. He only does this when I am drinking and I find it so cute and adorable and instead of telling him to get off the sofa, I take photos of him instead πŸ™‚

So anyhoo, I finally got out of bed with said hangover, had a shower, listened to Sam talk AT me about being hungover and then I had a guest visitor by the name of Uncle Mark.

No, he is not my Uncle but is my daughters Uncle on her fathers side. Did you get that? Anyway, he has always been ‘Uncle Mark’ to me since Accalia (said daughter) was born which is 22 years now. He came to visit me πŸ™‚ He drove all the way from the other side of town, battled the city road works (he is not a patient driver) and headed up to the country and not only did he visit but he had a gift for me too.

Oh, this is Uncle Mark and my gorgeous daughter on her 18th Birthday.

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Anyhoo, like I was saying, he also bought me a present. It was wrapped in gorgeous green wrapping paper and was kind of the shape of a box. I totally thought he had bought me a puppy but this was not to be. The only thing better than a puppy is ……….BUBBLES!

And not just one bottle of Jacobs Creek Trilogy Sparkling Wine but 6 of the amazing bottles!! SIX BOTTLES!! My eye balls nearly popped out of my head! Thank you Uncle Mark not only for coming all this way to visit Sam and I but also for the bubbles, funny stories, laughs and chats. It was great to see you and can’t wait to see you and your team on Friday πŸ™‚ *special mention to Veronica **Aka Bez, Berry, Bezalicious** for confirming to Uncle Mark what it is that I drink gallons off xx

The Wedding!

Seriously, this was a beautiful and amazing wedding. They all are I know I know but this one was different for me.

This wedding I was going there as a bald, burnt and cancer recovering woman with pretty finger nails and amazing Fiancee. 1st stop was to book a love shack, I mean, hotel room, because this wedding was well over an hour away from where we live. Thankfully, cousin Linda and her hubby Reuben were on hand to collect us from the side of the road and take us to the wedding. Check out the Bride and Groom. Tell me she doesn’t look like Princess Mary!!?? OMG, totally gorgeous couple and totally cute baby Isabella-Rose!

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I asked bride Tania to give me a royal wave and she did. The groom is my cousin Andrew Martin and obviously, their gorgeous baby is my 2nd cousin. I could just gobble her up. Look at her walking down the aisle.

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I had received so many hugs and kisses from my amazing and supportive family that I had to remind myself that this day was NOT about me but about the gorgeous and newly married couple.

My poor suffering but loving Sam was there by my side. He not only was by my side but could tell when it was a bit too much and I needed air or a rest. He really is amazing. Sam isn’t the most social person, and would much prefer to be at home but suffers through my begging and pleading that I do every so often to join me in these events.

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Here we are, two amazing people who have had a pretty trying year and two people who are going to be looking at their health and well being in the new year. hehe

You know how at weddings, there is the bridal dance, and then the father daughter dance and then everyone dances…. well, I am used to sitting these out but blow me down but did my man hold his hand out and offer the dance to me. I almost cried. I can’t do that though because it might mess up my eye make up LOL. That is a joke because I have no eye lashes or eyemake up. Anyhoo, cousin Linda took this photo which I absolutely love!

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Ok, I might look like an Alien and I have never ever seen Sam smile in a photo (Thanks Linda for getting him at the right moment) (He was giving my cousin Linda the finger!) but I love it. He asked me to dance!

Speaking of my cousin Linda…. Well, it turns out that she stayed right until the end of the night just for me. I was having a hoot of a time, even though I got a little tired occasionally (from my amazing Beyonce dancing) and her husband (who is a truck driver and had only had 1/2 hour sleep before the wedding) was sleeping in the car, she let me have a good time. Both Linda and Sam were happy for me to enjoy my night and they didn’t end it soon as I am sure they had both wanted too.

Oh, check out this gorgeous photo of my mum and I. Thank you to Sam for taking it πŸ™‚

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Here is my cousin Tamara (Sister of the groom) and I. Keep in mind it is the end of the night and my eyes and skin have turned a bit yellow/orange.

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At the end of the night, Cousin Linda with sleepy husband Reuben drove Sam and I back to our hotel room and Granny hitched a lift. Now, I recon Granny is about 86 years old (possibly a year or two older) and after Sam had HOISTERED her into the four wheel drive, we set off. I happened to mention an incident that occurred when I was about 6 or so.

Keep in mind that our Granny has 13 Grandchildren and I dont know how many great grandchildren. Anyway, So I say, hey Gran, remember when you smacked me for My Sister cracking her head open?

Without a beat Granny says to me, Well I told you NOT to go out the gate but you did and you went to Mr Smalls house next door. Wowza, transported back to being a kid and I almost burst into bloody tears waiting for a smack. Granny was not a bit smacker but I got a smack for this and told to wait outside while my sister, Annette, was fixed up. That woman, Granny, is absolutely bloody amazing.

This is Granny. (thank you Ali for letting me take the photo you took of her, oh, Ali, do you mind if I use this pic?)

Granny

I think it is safe to say that I had an amazing time at the wedding. I had even sent a message to the bride and groom prior to the wedding day asking if it was ok for me to be bald at their wedding. They lovingly said they didn’t care if I was bald or hairy so that made me feel a whole lot better.

Thanks to chemo, I seem to have entered early menopause and this causes a lot of hot flushes and having anything on my head is more of an irritant than anything else. Anyway, I don’t need to look at myself while attending events so it works well. I just have to be ready when I see any photos that yes, that is me looking like the alien.

Thankfully I am comfortable being bald and find it more pleasurable and comfortable than anything else. My amazing friend Kathy Tilling has sent me her wig in case I need it and I have many scarfs for head coverings. I am incredibly fortunate but for the time being, bald is best πŸ™‚

This weekend has been incredible. I think it may take me a week to get over the dancing, drinking, laughter and happy tears but it will have all been worth it to see an amazing couple unite as one.

Thank you again Uncle Mark for your visit and very thoughtful gift.

Thank you to the ‘Royal Couple’ for having us attend such a beautiful and amazing event.

Thank you to mum for taking me out the day before for a bit of pampering.

Thank you to Linda and Roobs for the lifts to and from the event, to Linda for the laughs and chats (Sam said he is really not that quiet, he just couldn’t get a bloody word in between you and I hehe), Roobs for sleeping in the car to make sure I had a good time.

Most of all, thank you to my Sam (Dr Hands) for being there by my side, for taking some photos for me, looking out for me, piling me with bubbles, dancing with me and loving me.

 

 

Plodding Along

The title says it all. I honestly feel like I am just plodding along through life and I feel lost. Each day (during the week) feels the same. Poor Dr Hands is really struggling to cheer me up and I want to cheer up but I can’t. I just feel down. I feel nothing. I don’t feel happiness.

I thought I would feel this through the recovering from surgery phase. I didn’t.

I thought I would feel it through chemotherapy. I didn’t.

Yes, there were times that I struggled here and there through each of the above but the feelings were so far and few between.

Recovering from surgery was ok because I was inundated with such lovely visitors, love, flowers, gifts, medication etc.

Chemotherapy I had Sam feeding, drugging and watering me. People (my mum) visiting and the neighbours caring for me. Medication to make me feel better and there seemed like a kind of purpose to it all.

Now, I am having radiotherapy and I am all twisted in the head. Is it possible that radiation brings you down? I have struggled with anxiety disorder for many years and I wonder if the radiotherapy has cancelled my medication out?

Or, is it the drive to and from the city each day, sitting in a waiting room that is depressing and full of very old people that brings me down?

Maybe it is the Radiotherapy clinic I attend that brings me down.

The oncology unit I went to for chemo was always upbeat and all of the staff knew me and smiled and hello’d me. Some would ask me about my blog and if Sam wasn’t with me they would ask about him by name.

The radiotherapy unit is different. The receptionists (except one) are grumpy and not at all friendly. The patients in the waiting room are all elderly and so frail looking. I want to feed these people and make them smile but they wont look at me let alone talk to me.

There is a big difference between oncology and radiation.

And another thing. Have I told you that I have lymphodema? Well, I had my first lymphodema massage two weeks ago and oh wow, it was amazing. I loved it. One hour of left arm and left side massage was incredible.

Well, I had another of these appointments today and it was shit. There was no lovely massage but it was some kind of laser therapy. I dont want that. This laser thing just flashed and beeped for an hour as the lady ran from room to room changing all the laser thingies on each of us but it sucked. I wanted my massage. Where was my massage?

The massage/laser lady said that there had been a slight improvement in my elbow crease but the rest of my arm had remained the same. All of my own personal massage and squeezing of the memory foam thingy had done nothing. I want my massage back.

This laser therapy was so much like having my car tuned. I pay a fortune but can’t see or feel any difference.

Then, I had my radiation appointment which was 2 hours and 20 minutes after my crap laser therapy so I took myself out for lunch which was amazing. I went to a city cafe and they made me a gorgeous, gluten free and tender chicken tenderloin salad with a hint of sweet chili and balsamic salad. Amazing!

I had been told that the whole of South Terrace (where my clinic for radiotherapy is) would be closed off today so I made sure I had at least an hour and a half to find some where to park (imagining a two block walk) only to find that the entire of South Terrace was not blocked off at all. The work men had resurfaced the road on the weekend instead so, I ended up parking right in front of my clinic in a two hour spot and at my appointment one hour and twenty minutes early! FFS.

Blow me down with a feather but they had a free spot that someone had cancelled (it was hot today so the patient couldn’t come in) and I went in and was zapped in no time. Quick hello to Professor Borg (he is monitoring my treatment and wont let me lose any weight until after radiotherapy) and I was on my way.

Driving home I said to me,

“Me, I think you should have an alcohol free day today”

I was home for 10 minutes before getting back into the car to drive to the local bottle shop to get some bubbles. No, I do not think I am an alcoholic. Yes, I love the bubbles fizzing on my tongue hehe. AND it is nice on my sore radiation infected throat. It is medicinal!!!

As anyone knows, I do not like the words side effects but use the word ‘feelings’ when it comes to something that has occurred during treatment.

Here are my feelings with radiotherapy.

  1. Burnt throat. It feels like tonsillitis. When I eat or drink it hurts and feels like the liquid or food has to go through a big lump in my throat to get down. The Professor has recommended taking two pandadol before each meal. This is silly because apparently you are only supposed to take a maximum of 8 panadol a day. Has he seen the size of me? Obviously I eat more than three times a day!! Not anymore.
  2. Redness on my shoulder, front and back. So, I am being zapped not only on the ‘bomb site’ but also my collar bone and shoulder because of being HER2 positive and the cancer being known to pop into these areas. The bomb site, where my lovely leftie boobie was taken from, is slightly itchy but nothing too bad.
  3. Depression. I’ll work out why that is occurring and will get back to you.

As usual, Dr Hands is on call for cuddles, kisses and love. He is worried about me, I can see this and I am trying so very hard to make this easier for him but it is hard. He has known me too long and can see straight through me.

If you are new to this blog, Dr Hands is my fiancee Sam and he doesn’t read this blog (Phew).

The recent highlights are

  1. My gorgeous and amazing daughter, Accalia-Jayne, came with me to my herceptin appointment and radiotherapy appointment last Thursday. We had coffee between appointments and after appointments. This girl of mine (22 years old) is an amazing person and can make me laugh, can hold a conversation and has amazing social skills and manners.
  2. My team from work’s Christmas Lunch. I haven’t seen these people since April 7 2015. I love that I was invited to the Christmas Lunch and they all had a hug for me, made me laugh and feel a part of the team again. AND, they want me back hehe. I’ll be back at work soon and I can’t wait!
  3. A trip to the beach with my long time friend Tracey, her son Ben and my gorgeous boy (groodle dog) Brady. We started with a drive to Willunga for lunch and then proceeded to Aldinga Beach where I watched Ben (who is aged 4 foot?? I think about 6 or 7 years old??) encourage Brady into the water with no effort at all. I have never seen Brady in the beach water or, so bloody clean after being in the water! Check out the photo below, Ben took Brady much further into the water but I like to live my life through my eyes and not a camera.
  4. A lovely and gentle visit from my Mum on Saturday. She always makes me feel calm and relaxed
  5. Sam bought me a Santa to go with the Reindeer! He is getting into the Christmas spirit (or just suffering for the cause).
  6. I made a new friend today. Leslie has recently been diagnosed with breast cancer and has MY surgeon and MY hospital. She seems amazing (we are communicating via facebook) but I must remember, these early times of being told of having breast cancer are frightening and I must be sensitive. (I am quite blase about it all at the moment and do not want to be like that with a new cancer patient).
  7. I am still alive.

I shall leave you with a giggle, if you have the giggleness of my neighbour Clare who thought these two photos were hilarious!

Photo 1. Dogs plus reindeer, all happy and awake. Kelly (red staffy x) and Brady Bailey-Wilkinson (white groodle) are kissing in front of Smiley (reindeer)

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This is after all the fun and games

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Ben and Brady

Typical Pro Chemo Week

I have done nothing but sleep as per usual following my very last chemo session but what I love about it, I dont give a shit.

Usually when I am bed ridden, suffering constipation, followed by hemorrhoids, tears, tantrums etc I am an absolute sook and can not be consoled. But this time, I am A OK. This is it. No more chemo. Fingers crossed, no more backed up poops due to the endone and other medication.

What was the reason I popped in here for…..?

Um, shit, let me think.

Oh, thats right. I just read a lady complaining that she couldn’t afford to purchase her husbands birthday gift due to medical bills and all other life time bills that never end.

With cancer, there needs to be a ‘on pause’ card, or something similar.

My partner and I have total and full health insurance and pay a grand amount for this and even still, we are very strapped for cash through this cancer bizzo.

All in Australia dollars, I pay approx $150.00 per month for health insurance. This is the top health insurance you can purchase and when I did my tax this year, I found I had spent over $5,700 out of pocket for what my health insurance and Medicare did not cover.

Why on earth do people pay for health insurance?

Well, I’ll tell you why. I overheard my amazing oncologist on the phone last Thursday when I was being blasted with more chemo and he stated on the phone to his receptionist that he simply could not take on another five ‘public’ patients. This is why my diagnosis, surgery and chemo has been so quick.

Yes, I complain about my health insurance fees (as well as my home, car, contents and what not) but at the end of the day, it has saved my life and time. I can’t even imagine how I would feel having to wait for surgery, results, more surgery, more therapy etc.

A bit of a good news story is I had sent Dr Hands to the local bottle shop (remember, we live in a country town) to buy two bottles of red wine for my amazing GP who home visits me for no cost to give me my after chemo injection every three weeks, and Dr Hands came home with an amazing bottle of bubbles. It was a bottle of Mumm which is quite pricey. I asked him why he had purchased this bottle along with the red wine for the doctor and it turns out that the owner of the local had donated amazing bottle of bubbles to me knowing that my last chemo session had just been had. My local bottle shop had donated a $50.00 bottle of bubbles to me out of the kindness of their hearts knowing what I had been through.

My point of the generosity of my local bottle shop is not the price of the bubbles but the fact that they remembered, they’ve been through this journey with me and they cared. Would this happen in the city? I hope it does happen in the city and all over because seriously, going through the shit of cancer, chemo and so forth, it is lovely to have someone recognize the crap you’ve been through and have rewarded you at the end.

This week, it’s been tough, but knowing it is my last ever post chemo dealings seriously makes my life a lot easier. My hair is growing so long and amazing except for the middle section which is as shiny as a diamond, so I look like an 80’s rock band producer. Sam and I have agreed to shave it all off again in a couple of weeks because a woman with beautiful platinum blonde (No Not Grey) with a receding hair line just doesn’t look lovely.

Anyone who is interested in my life of hemorrhoids, yep, they’re still the bane of my life and I cry and shiver and shake and am like someone being tortured every time I go to the toilet so I will be not sad to leave this part of the cancer/chemo journey behind.

My gorgeous father in law popped in during the week and dropped off a couple of bottles of bubbles, a punnet of strawberries and a pink ribbon ring which totally brightened my day. He is amazing.

My amazing mother still brings me flowers every weeks she comes over on the weekend. I was getting worried for a while because my house was starting to look like a funeral parlour but is now looking just lovely with pretty flowers. My mother in law to be bought over some gorgeous flowers from her garden that also came with a bottle of bubbles which was also a lovely gesture because she was heading off interstate and wouldn’t be around to celebrate my final chemo session.Β  There seems to be a pattern going on with the bubbles. And I love it πŸ™‚

I haven’t updated my ‘books’ section of this blog for a while but just know, I have finished every single Game of Thrones book and OMG, what a book hangover I had from that. This is seriously an amazing series of books. I couldn’t put them down. I love the fact that any person of any age can read these books and love them. I say this because I got my mum into them, Dr Hands has watched every episode, and I know a lot of other people who have either read or watched the series.

I will update my book section soon though because I have read so many books through this cancer/chemo journey.

So as you can see, there is nothing new to report today. But I guess I just wanted to get some words out, let you know I am doing ok, I can see the light at the end of the tunnel, can’t wait to get back to work, can’t wait to start attending events, birthdays, weddings and what ever else comes along.

One last thing, my neighbour comes home today from England!!! It has been torture seeing her car in her driveway knowing I can’t just pop over and have a total and complete breakdown about some trivial thing. Once she is over her jetlag, has been to work, I am over my post chemo effects, Clare and I will be catching up over many many bubbles. πŸ™‚

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This celiing fan is my saviour each night and day. Poor Sam has to freeze each night to ensure I am at a comfortable temperature.

My gorgeous Sturt Desert Pea (South Australian Flower) in my front garden, flowering yet again this year….. How pretty xx

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Pro Chemo Clinic Please

I think this is something needed. We need a Pro Chemo Clinic for those who are so dexied up (pepped) and no one else in the household has the energy to keep up.

The feeling is like I have been given a big speed bomb (Mum, MIl, FFIL, Family and Friends) I have only tried speed a few times I promise, your few and my few may be quite different but I DO NOT use or take speed or illegal drugs these days and nor have I for a for year or so. Few, glad I got all that out.

Anyhoo. Here I am, Dr Hands fast asleep (I think he has a new kidney stone growing eeek), Brady and Kelly are both fast asleep and me, well, wide a blippin awake!

Let me share my gorgeous haven, bedroom, that I spend much of my time in and have spent some of my ‘splurge money’ on those gorgeous lamps…

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Its crap. The only person in the house, wide awake (speed like from memory) all others asleep in the house and what do I do? I hate TV but I watched a shit movie called ‘Switched Identity’ I think it was called and there were very few funny bits in it. Now, there is some crap with some dude who swears a lot and is in Spain telling people what they are doing wrong. I might have to search foxtel because this show sucks.

Here are my sleepy heads minus Samo because he would take my head off if I woke him for a photo…

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My texts to my gorgeous daughter had me in stitches, Brady had some strange things going on in his head that made me laugh, Kelly had a tennis ball in the side of her jawls which made me laugh. Sam has made me laugh all day.

Then, I am all alone. Pepped up from all the drugs they give me during chemo but the loved ones, they can’t keep up.

So, bring on the Pro Chemo Clinic. Some dude will take some weed, another will enjoy the ‘experimental’ speed I have tried but seriously, the first night after chemo is kinda tough. I want someone to get totally and utterly drunk with me. To talk shit and laugh and ignore the worlds problems for a moment.

But, I can’t book this in because other chemo treatments have me comotosed (I tried spell check and it wasn’t working for me so just work with me here) within a few hours of getting home from chemo. Tonight though, am feeling pumped and happy and loving the world and my life.

I am wondering if there was a clinic that looked like a bar for the pro chemo patients of the day, would that help not only our carers and dogs, but also us. Some of us come home all pepped up and ready to chat but there is no one to chat too. Oh stop it, dont be berating Sam because I think he is hiding a kidney stone from me but imagine, all us Pro Chemo Peeps, smoking weed, drinking bubbles (thats me) or just pumped from the meds given, we could have a hoot of a party.

It is tough the night or two following chemo. I think I have had all of the feelings. I have been high as a kite, low as a maggot, midstream with nothing going on in my head (work peeps, you can cease laughing now), and absolute comatose. So, I can’t judge what I am going to be like from each chemo to the next. Mind you, the next one, whilst a long day, sounds a lot easier.

Next chemo has me having the heart test (to make sure my heart will cope with the next lot of chemo), which is at 10am and then at 1am, my new chemo which apparently will give me a lot of fatigue and bone acheness but no nausea (yippeee) and it is up to debate as to weather my hair loss continues or I grow my hair. See previous post.

Any hoo…… Obviously I am wide awake with all of these bloggie posts tonight. You may not hear from me for a few days butΒ  I am going to imagine sad faces all around the world.

I thought twice about my profile pic but then I realised, I am who I am. I am ok with being bald. It is time for not only Australia but the world to be ok with bald women. No, I am not a lesbiano (even though there is nothing wrong with that), but why do I feel I have to wear a wig, hat, scarf etc. These make my head itch and I am so happy that Sam is just fine and dandy with me going alllll natural.

Ohhhh Ashley… stop hehehe

Dr Hands was out of Jacks and Cola. Me, for once, being the sober one offered to head down to what I call the chemist but what is in actual fact, the drive through bottle o’. I parked in the ‘browse’ section because that is what I am used to doing and I am glad I did.

Once I walked in I saw Ashley. You know Ashely….. the one who yelled out from his postal bike ‘what did you do to your head’ and ‘oh Amanda, you have a present!’

Well, he part times his work at the bottle shop and I love that.

I walked in and he says, Hey Shiney!! That is because I have no hair covering. It is mostly bald head with a bit of shadow of prickly hair at the back. We have a good laugh at it and he says, I’d be more embarrased heading out in those slippers that I would without a head covering hehe.

Then, I ask him to pick me up that carton of jacks and cola and then he says, no wonder you dont look like you are going through cancer/chemo by drinking this stuff! I try to explain it isn’t me that drinks it, it is Sam and he laughs, not believing me but I dont care because we have big laughs and giggles. This, this is what I love about living in a small town. My postie also serves me at the bottle shop πŸ™‚

And, he laughs with me. He isn’t embarrassed by my baldish head. He laughs about spitting chips (I think it was chips) while laughing at one of my jokes.

Living in a small town has its advantages. I have read so much about the disadvantages about small towns but we are lucky here in Meadows. Everyone might know about everyone but boy can they laugh. Even my clean, Spanna Shanna is a laugh.

So, while I lapped up Ashleys lovely words about me looking and presenting well with my cancer, it made me realise that I am ok. I can look forward to a happy and long life once I am done with all of this horrid cancer bizzo. There will be a day soon when I am complaining about it being only Tuesday when I wish it was Friday.

Now is not the time for those wishes but between my sweet and funny Ashley (bottle shop person and Postie), gorgeous and nurturing neighbours, Dr Hands of course, Bossy and helpful cousins, My mama, and of course, that gorgeous and amazing daughter of mine, I am doing ok. I will deal with the feelings that some people describe as side effects, the endless days and nights sleeping off the feelings, I will be ok.

In the meantime, I will continue to fight cancer in MY way and soon enough, will be back at work doing what I love.

Thanks Ashley for making me laugh.

Thanks Mama for visiting today.

Thanks Kiddo for responding to my late night text messages

Thanks Brady for being my beautiful boy.

Thanks to Sam, MIL,FIL, SIL and all my gorgeous nieces and nephews.

My sister, brother in law, cousins. aunts and uncles, friends, friends of friends, mothers of friends etc.

Ok fine, Yes, I have had a few bubbles and am feeling the best I have all week and am loving everyone but geez, these days are far and few between.

Here is my photo of the day that makes me smile…. Brady with one of his most favourite toys…. a balloon!

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Delivery for Amanda…?

So, the doorbell rings AGAIN today and thankfully Sam is home to answer it. A very masculine voice says, delivery for Amanda Bailey? Sam says, yep, she lives here and before I know it, Sam enters our bedroom with arms full of pressies!

Bloody Gilda. I bet Gilda has lavished all of these gifts on me and sure enough, amongst all the gifts was a gorgeous card not just for me but for Sam too.

As you can see we were delivered a gorgeous succulent plant, Sams favourite beer, my favourite bubbles and a gorgeous scarfy hat thing for baldies like I am going to be! As you can see it looks quite fetching on my I think.

Thank you so very much Gilda, that was indeed a lovely surprise and we both very much appreciate the though fullness.

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A visit to Granny

Today I felt like shit. Like, really yuck! I had to get up early because I had tradesmen due to be at my home between 8am and 12pm so I set my alarm, got up, showered, dressed, plugged door bell into the ensuite powerpoint, opened all the curtains and blinds and promptly went back to bed. Keep in mind that all of the windows have sheer curtains so I can see out but they can’t see in. I wanted the house to look as though I had been up for hours. Not entirely sure why I feel the importance of that but it is something I have always felt.

I hate tradies usually. I mean, they are great people and do a great job but I hate being given a four hour time frame as to when they’ll be there.

My idea of being dressed and ready and having the house looking like I’d been up for hours seemed genius to me (and my cousin Tam) and it bloody worked. One thing I didn’t bother with was putting Miss Fluff in. I put a bra on because bloody rightie is too big to be left unrestrained and blow me down with a feather, the tradies were HOT HOT HOT! Since when is a tradie hot? They are usually the older generation with lovely manners but not today. These boys were gorgeous and I should have been handing out my single friends and families phone numbers.

Tradies being hot of course is nothing to me because I have the man of my dreams but man, these guys were TV Commercial ready. Wow, who’d a thought you could get one hot tradesman let alone two??!

After they’d finished their job, I was still feeling really crappy and tired but I forced myself to jazz myself up a little more and took the drive to go and see my Granny. Remember Gran? The one I asked to knit me a square for my chemo good luck charm to be faced with a million questions? Yep, thats the one. Went to visit her and she made me laugh and I did feel better for seeing her.Β  I really loved her comment being that I looked great and it didn’t look like I had recently had surgery. I didn’t want to frighten her by lifting up my t-shirt and showing her how recent surgery really did look hehe. She is just gorgeous though. We talked of many things as one does with Grannys and I just loved seeing her.Β  This is a photo of my gran from geez, I recon about 30 or more years ago but trust me, she looks no different but boy she is shrinking. I could almost put her in my pocket and bring her home. She’d be like a pocket granny. How cool would that be?

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Although I still felt crap by the time I got home, I am so glad I went to visit her because as we all know, my internal spa therapy (chemo) starts on Thursday arvo so I have been trying to get some jobs and visits done before this starts. How do you prepare for the unknown though?

I have been a bit snappy and Dr Hands said to me tonight that it is ok to blog about being scared of the internal spa therapy and you know what? I am not scared of it but I hate that I don’t know what it is going to be like for ME. I do love that people have told me that for them it has been ok or they’ve only had a bit of tiredness or nausea but how can I plan my life around the unknown? How do I know that I am going to be ok and be able to catch up with friends on the weekend? How do I know what I am going to feel like to eat or drink or do.

These are the things that give me the shits and make me snappy and cranky. Thankfully, my lovely bubbles have worked wonders in suppressing said feelings of the night time but they just dont work well with my morning gluten free weet bix.

I thought I had something funny happen today to tell you but for the life of me, I can’t remember so I will just leave you with my words of wisdom for the early morning tradies and how to sleep until they ring that door bell.

Thats it for me tonight. I am going to bed early (9:02pm) because I want to try and tackle some more of my George Orwells 1984 and get a decent night sleep.

I am still happy, feeling confident of a long, happy and healthy life so please dont take these recent shitty days as a pattern. Once my internal spa therapy starts, at least I’ll know what I will be in for during the next six months. xx