Well, this week has been a week of trying to get back to some sort of ‘normal’. It’s been harder than it looks believe me. Yes, I look fine, happy and much healthier to the outside world and yes I am compared to the walking dead look I’ve been sporting the last few months. But underlying I am dealing with extreme tiredness, general aches and pains, serious lack of sleep from the tamoxifen, and the effort it takes now to do everything is unbelievable. I am having to have more strength and will power than ever! It’s a strange middle phase on this cancer journey as I’m over the worst (I hope), but still loads more to go with radiotherapy, a year of herceptin (targeted chemo), more ops to come, and ten years of tamoxifen side effects!
Phil is great, he’s so good a reminding me to take it easy and slowly – I am careful not to do too much in one day and still taking one day at a time. But I’m allowing myself to look to the future more. Hospital visits really take it out of you too, although I am so lucky that Phil can come with me. Our lives revolve around hospital appointments still! I must be looking better and doing more as the kids have stopped helping out so much – don’t get me wrong, they are still helping when we ask them, and it’s good their life is more normal now – kids adapt! But oh do they need a holiday too – I can tell all this has taken it out of all of them – especially Freya. Can’t wait for the summer holidays just to have them around and chill.
So I’ve been gradually been building up my fitness and strength to be able to deal with the next round of drugs and radiotherapy next week.
I have been starting my days with a super sonic smoothie in my wonderfully addictive nutribullet. This usually comprises of a large handful of spinach or kale or both, lots of berries – raspberries, blueberries, black/red currants, strawberries, flaxseed, natural yogurt, a banana, and a splash of coconut water (or tap water). Even I would never eat greens for breakfast so this is great. I love my nutribullet! (thank you Paul and Shell x).
Then I’ve been swimming most mornings which feels so good! When I am in the water it takes away the burning feeling of the nerves healing, I don’t ache so much, it just makes me feel good and helps me to forget what I have actually been going through. It relaxes me so much as I yoga breath when I swim (deep breaths!). So it was a great goal to day to reach my target of 100 lengths of the pool – only small lengths but still, this was an achievement!
Swimming has also helped the cording in my arm tremendously. Amy, the physiotherapist, couldn’t believe how much better my arm has got since I’ve been allowed to swim again. I had physio on Wednesday which was a full half hour of pain – good pain – but oh did it hurt. She said as I’m getting more movement in the bad arm it’s getting harder for her to stretch and snap the cords. But we will keep going. When I swim I stretch my arm out straight – this really helps and she’s shown me how to massage and stretch the cords myself – bit difficult one handed though. I could ask Phil but I think he may break my whole arm! He’s too strong! But I am so determined to get there. She’s also said that I can start gentle yoga and maybe some gym work. Still no weight bearing though! But this is good news as I’m not allowed to swim while having radiotherapy because of the damage, irritation and infection that could be caused to the skin. I asked them if I coated myself in vaseline would that be ok (like the channel swimmers that were covered in lard!) – but no! So I’m hoping I cope well with the rads and can soon be back swimming. I also have to stay completely out of the sun or covered while on radiotherapy, and very careful for 6 months afterwards – looks like I’m going to become a lady of the shade! Or I could just walk around with a huge sheet over my whole body! I’m thinking of the ET look……
More good news is my hair is growing at rocket speed! I am a walking fluff ball now. Especially if I blow dry, I get stroked a lot, especially by Freya! She says I feel like a puppy! I suppose it is baby hair. But it feels so good to have a covering. So keep growing hair so you can protect my head again! I wonder if I will ever grow my hair long again? It is just so easy short, maybe not this short but I may stay short. We’ll see.