Yesterday, I completed my fourth chemo session. This marked the start of cycle two!
Unfortunately, I was sick (for the first time) over the weekend, so I ended up in A&E. As a chemo patient, I was seen immediately. It turned out to be an upset stomach and nothing related to ‘Cyril’ or my chemo, but I am glad I was checked over. It was a long night; I got back home at 5AM, and the A and E experience shook me. I felt disheartened and almost blamed myself. I started to question whether I had done something wrong. Messages from my amazing friends helped me snap out of feeling low.
Below there are a few of the messages I received :
So I was thinking about it. When you’re feeling ill – that’s when the battle between chemo and Cyril is taking place. So your body is the arena the battle is taking place in. So every time you don’t feel good you need to think – chemo is taking on Cyril now and they are having their battle, and when you feel better it’s because chemo knocked Cyril out of the ring.
This is just a minor set back after a long line of massive achievements in the last few weeks. You are doing so well and we are all so proud. You made me so happy on Friday and I can’t wait for the next time. Get some rest and love you lots xxxx
When I walked into the chemo room, I felt even calmer than last week. The fear melts away as you get used to the routine. The doctors where not worried about my tummy upset (it seems to have been food related), and meeting the dietician will help me to understand more about what to eat and what not eat. My bloods came back normal. However, my iron is still too low. This means I require a blood transfusion next week. I am not worried about this because I know that low iron can occur with chemo. Also, my professor feels that I have dealt with the dosages so well that he increased the levels of one particular drug. This means they are hitting Cyril even harder! It will also mean that my body will be hit harder, and I may feel worse, but paradoxically, that’s a good thing. Also, I received positive tumour marker results. After round one, the markers have gone from 3,000 to 1,000!
The nurses and doctors are so kind and caring; when they found out I have never had blood transfusion before, they asked me if there was anything I was worried about. I spoke about feeling anxious about seeing the blood! Due to this, they said they can cover the blood bag so I won’t see it. I never imagined myself having a blood transfusion. I am so thankful to the people who donate blood, because they have made it possible for me to have the transfusion. When I am back to full health, I will do my part by giving blood, because I know what if feels like to need the blood. We are lucky to have organisations like the Joely Bear Appeal, which run local blood sessions three times a year. For more information on the vital work that this charity does please look at @JoelyBearAppeal and Facebook.com/Joelybear. On Sunday 10th July, The Joely Bear Appeal hosts their 65 blood donor session as Yavneh College in Borehamwood from 9:15-4:30. A supervised crèche is provided for children.Yesterday, whilst I sat in my chemo chair, I realised just how vital blood donations are. If you are able to, I urge you to consider donating blood. As I realised yesterday, you never know when you will need it.
It was great to meet a member of the press team at the Royal Marsden. We discussed the Finding Cyril website and about things to come on the website. So watch this space …
I also had my regular foot massage from amazing auntie. Whilst I fight Cyril, she is fighting a fear of trains for me. I am so grateful and touched by what my aunt is doing. Staff and patients have recognised how great she is, and how massaging feet is a wonderful idea! In the future, my aunt has decided that she will be going back to the chemo room at The Marsden to volunteer in this way and offer a bit of solace and support to other cancer patients.
Please take a look at the photos from my 4th session and have a look at some of the messages from my family.