Monday, June 06, 2005

Day 18 - Don't look back in anger

Pain - 5 0ut 0f 10
Mind - AM 8 out of 10 PM 3 out of 10
Chocolate digestives: 5
Tomatoes and Carrots juiced 12
Portions of ice cream and strawberries 1

Today was a day of anger, resentment and a final realisation that I have cancer. I was very lucky today to have the pleasure to go lunch with Nicola my dear friend - At the Anchor! I must admit to use an Oprah expression "Your rubbish" at keeping in touch with friends and people who mean lots to me, my family are a prime example. So Nicola sorry! Time for me to grow up.

Talking of growing up I went to the joint ENT/ORAL/CANCER clinic today. I sat in a waiting room with 15 other men and women who had or were in remission with cancer. I looked around and the sad fact was that I am 30 years younger than the next patient. Whilst in the waiting room I was greeted by nurses who treated me like an old mate, saying how well I looked and "ohh look at that neat scar" In fact it looks like a relief map of the Somme in 1916 but evidently that is a good sign. I felt angry inside looking around me at the old folk there. Not at them, but an illness that threatens to take away my life at such a relative young age. The anger manifested it when I got home by opening the balcony crying my eyes out and playing Coldplay "Yellow" as loud as I can. If anything happens to me can you all ensure my kids get to hear it. The clinic is a scrum down when consultants swap chairs, making statements, like we do not have your biopsy back from the neck dissection - eh yes you do the Doctor gave it to me on Friday. At this point you could see the rustling of paper and hey presto! In fact it is a good job I mentioned it because I was likely to have my right tonsil and neck radiated as well. It was clear that without reference to the notes "Oh but the one lymph gland they removed was big" yes we know that I deduced treatment methodology was a done deal before I entered that room and whatever the notes said I was getting both chambers.

Today, however an additional word was mentioned "Chemotherapy" This treatment struck me down I was not prepared for this. When you are in a meeting such as this, it is bit like being at then end of an interview you grasp on every word, every sentence, the way it is delivered to try and suck out additional information on your life your chances of survival. I walked out that meeting knowing on Monday I am getting my mask moulded for radiation, as you are aware you have to wear a protective mask for radiation and I start the planning sessions next week. This is for real, a mask with my own name on it.

The treatment will start ASAP. I will have 6 weeks radiation therapy with 3 sessions of chemo at the beginning middle and end, which will facilitate an overnight stay for the chemo. I left the meeting and called Kevin, Nurse Mitchell of the Oncology department who put my mind at rest as I had been tripped up in my research by chemo. It is real belt and braces traetment, the chemo will kill off any loose cancer cells that may have escaped into my body and in essence I am having the best opportunity to get rid of this and banish for a long time these horrid cells.

I was close to tears on the bus. I made the mistake of being on my own. The bus journey on the way home was a mixture of grief, anger and fear. I feeling I suspect I shall never witness again in my lifetime. Nigel, you have cancer, Nigel this could kill you, Nigel you will beat this.

Goodnight time for more "Yellow" anymore suggestions for a black day CD?

1 comment:

battypatty said...

Scott Walker always did it for me, especially Jackie. They serve the purpose of allowing you to have a good howl and then - deep breath - and back on the bus.As for the chemo - as Dan , my old work compadre, always used to say " Belt & braces, belt & braces" Don't forget, I am here 24/7, love you xxx