Well, May has passed me by! A life changing month, but glad to see June on the horizon.
Monday was my last day of ‘lockdown’ – days 7-10 (chemo treatment being day 1) when my immunity is at its very lowest and I have to be even more careful than usual. On those days I can’t go to supermarkets, hospitals, be around children – pah!, etc and generally best to stay home and keep myself to myself. Having not been out for days, freedom beckoned. Really pleased to have 10 days ahead of, fingers crossed, feeling ok and lots of time to do some fun stuff before chemo 2.
Despite the positive feeling that freedom brought, Monday afternoon/evening I was suddenly so upset, with reality hitting me hard. Just came on all of a sudden and after a couple of hours it had gone again, in part to a walk and a chat with a brilliant friend.
A few things this week have made us realise that chemo isn’t just the day you go in for treatment and the 10 days following. It affects everything, and some things that were insignificant before now loom large.
I mentioned to the chemo unit that I had a routine dental appointment booked and they said it’s fine to go as it’s the 11th day, but ‘of course if you need any work done, fillings etc, then you need to have a blood test.’ They keep mentioning this stuff like I should know, them forgetting that this is all new to me. No work necessary thankfully, but this kind of info keeps reminding me this whole situation is so not normal.
Had a lovely hour or so with Tilly and friends at the park. Really appreciating and enjoying the normal things, things I’d always taken for granted before. Though the afternoon went a bit awry…
I called the chemo unit again as I’d had a sore throat for a couple of days which was getting a lot worse quite quickly and you’re supposed to inform them of this kind of thing so I did. I felt stupid calling them – what is there to be done about a sore throat anyway? Previously they’d said to stay at home and lie low. It’s just a sore throat, right? Wrong! ‘Go and see your GP right now, and you need a blood test.’ Really?? ‘Yes. Don’t mess around with this. Take your temperature every hour. If it goes to 38 or above, or if you feel cold and shivery get straight to A&E for IV antibiotics.’ As I was going to RUH the following day she booked my blood test for then as I didn’t have a temperature at the moment.
Got to GP, and seeing as I’m now special I was ushered through to a separate room to wait for the doc to finish his current appointment. The waiting room is no place for me these days, far too risky! He says it’s just a regular throat infection which I’m having trouble shifting because my immunity is so low, but which has serious implications for me because of chemo.
The blood test the next day checking various counts was ok, which is a relief.
So an afternoon and evening of cancelled plans, and feeling blue that the things that happened this week are now our normal, and just how it has to be for the next 6 months plus. Poops.