Sunday, September 20, 2009

The annual slog - The cancer research 10K

I have some good news today. Its flat, what is I hear you ask my tyre, your chest or your apartment, no Bournmeouth seafront!

It is that time again. My legs hurt and I would rather be in a large comfy chair being waited on by people serving me tea. I can but dream having just returned from a 7k run in readiness for the annual 10k charity bash.

I have raised over £3000 for Cancer Research in the 3 years since my treatment finished. This will be my 4th year

I am taking part in the Bournemouth Seafront, very flat on 18/10/2009 to raise funds for Cancer Research UK and would really welcome your support.

Of course I am going to beg for your money, but I know there is a credit crunch on.

This is my 4th 10k Cancer Research since my cancer treatment and to date I have raised over £3000.Please take a moment to sponsor us. It's really easy - you can donate online by credit or debit card at the following address:

All donations are secure and sent electronically to Cancer Research UK. If you are a UK taxpayer, Justgiving will add an automatic 28% bonus to your donation at no cost to you, making it worth even more. Please join us in supporting Cancer Research UK and a fabulous cause!If you wish to arrange something as low risk as a dress down day I would be delighted to add your collection to my total so that I can raise that £1000 a year I promised to Cancer Research.

I am also running the Great West Ron (Half Marathon) to celebrate 5 years Cancer free in May next year, care to join me?

Thanks and best wishes, Nigel

Monday, September 14, 2009

4.5 years and counting

I today had my last but one hospital appointment before the all clear. (Five years being the all clear) Having been through mouth cancer you know when something is not quite right but today I was confident if not nervous. Jen, my wife was on her way to New York the first time I had missed an appointment without her, but safe in the knowledge that I was ok.

I had cheated before hand as I had seen my dentist on Friday and attended today just before my hospital appointment so I had the double safeguard.

This check up was even more nerve racking having visited my mother on Friday. Mum is not the woman I knew she is frail, less than 6 stones and potentially with cancer. Mum has also Lewins Dementia which is a very nasty form in itself and has seen my mother over the last 10 years fall victim to this shocking illness.

The challenges of living with the after effects of cancer cannot be understated. I have often raised the point of the mental effects of the treatment but also the physical side. In my own case I get on with life with a half functioning muscle system in the top of of my shoulder and neck. I tend to shy away from the term less-abled because I do most things just takes me a bit longer to do things and hurts more! It has also left me partially deaf and physically scared though you have to look hard to see the joins where they sewed my head back on!

So as I move into the last 6 months of my remission I have been invited to sit with the SW peninsula head and neck experts as a patient representative, a task I wholly relish but one I hope can support clinicians and patients through this horrid journey.

Keep attacking Nige

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Still in shock

I am in shock this morning. I walked into my office ready for a days work and to be honest cried my eyes out. An unsual reaction for a 45 year old bloke in his 4th year of remission with cancer but one when I explain the reason you will understand.

When I get here in my life and mind I start to play my favourite song, Yellow by Coldplay. Orpah recorded it for me when I was ill and in those dark days despite it being sunny and warm of 2005 it gave me faith that I was wanted and needed by my friends and family. Orpah then had a beautiful baby called Emily, Emily was not well as a little baby but now is as beautiful as a toddling toddler she has now adopted yellow.

I met my brother last evening Dave who told me that my mum has suspected cancer. For those who do not know my mother she is 81 and lives in a residential home in Exmouth. Mum has lewins dementia for those who do not know about lewins I will not bore you with it now but it is a terrible illness. Mum is not well, even more so now it is suspected that my mum has the illness that I had. The worry for mum is that because of her illness and age treatment will be difficult. The treatment is a long game and the medical people are just not sure she is it up to it. If not then I will ensure she gets all the help she can and pain relief if we get to that stage.

I ahd just finished reading Alan Bennett's Diaries about his experience with his mother with Lewins. It brought home the shocking truth of an illness which is just put down as old age.

I have my last 4 year check up on Monday, my last before my 5 year check up. It has rocked me back and slapped me in the face to say cancer is still here and around me. Last year it was my nephew Mark and now my mum.

Look at the stars, Look how they shine for you, and everything you do, Yeah they were all Yellow.

Keep attacking!