Monday, January 07, 2013

An update

While I’m feeling better than I have all week, I thought I’d post an update.

I was in and out of hospital before Christmas. My daughter and I got food poisoning, and I got a temperature, so I went in, was given fluids, and discharged. Then, on the morning of Christmas Eve, I started my new medication (the one that costs $6160.29, but, being on the PBS, costs me $35.40) and I didn’t like it. Another temp and in I went. They kept me in overnight, which meant I was there for Christmas Eve and morning. I was sprung after lunch, so was very happy to see my family on Christmas Day afterall.

I’d suggested to the doctor that I go back to my old medication so I would be stable for my holiday, and he agreed. So, I was feeling OK while we were away. We went on a Sport and Rec camp, which was just the right level of holiday for us. Lots of lovely families, lots of activities for kids and parents, and we were fed. The only weird part about it was Cheater Man. There was a dad there who cheated at everything. He cheated at games against children. He cheated even when he wasn’t playing the game, but would just jump in so he could cheat. He pushed into the lunch line. He’d push his own children out of the way so he could win, even though there was no prize. It was very strange. I noticed that the women in his family didn’t look very happy - quite tight lipped. It must be hard to live with Cheater Man. I didn’t want to say anything to anyone else, at first, but by the end of the camp it was clear that everyone was aware of Cheater Man. When we caught the ferry home, the Ferry Man asked whose child had been sitting on the table. Cheater Man’s wife said it was her child. The table was broken, and someone needed to pay for it. Nothing more was said by Cheater Man’s family, and when the ferry docked, his tribe was seen RUNNING from the wharf.

Anyway, back home I’m back on my new medication and I don’t like it. Lots of bone pain. My face is puffy and red and hot. I’m hoping it will all settle down. I’m having a night off the medication tonight because I start chemo this week. The annoying part is that I have to wait for the hospital to phone me to tell if they have a bed for me and I should come in. Makes it hard to plan. Anyway, I’ve arranged for the children to be cared for by a range of people on different days. I’ll be in hospital for four days, all going well. I have a tablet loaded with my favourite, most beautiful (and all female) music, and some classic e-books. I had a consultation today with a naturopath friend who has advised me on ways to aid recovery from chemo. I also saw my doctor today, who said she’s planning for me to have three or four rounds and then go onto the transplant part of the process (which means two months in hospital). That’s good news, but I need to get a donor first.

So, how are the children coping? I hear you ask. Well, we watched Love Story the other night, and they weren’t too worried. The part about the sickness is treated so unrealistically (no questions, talking to the husband rather than the patient, keeping her in the dark, and some sort of vague treatment even though she is dying and has no chance of recovery) that it is difficult to take it seriously. We also watched the Orson Welles/Joan Fontaine version of Jane Eyre, and Banjo was very worried about the madwoman in the attic. You just can’t pick what children might react to. Banjo has been very vocal about my whole situation. She’s making up songs about mummy’s having chemo and will be bald. My sister has made them a schedule of jobs to do, and I’ve implemented pocket money once more. Other than that, I’d say the children are still mostly concerned with their own wants and needs (Banjo and Clancy are quite obsessed with their ipods - I haven’t got Matilda her 7 inch tablet yet - they’re sold out - she's being very patient), which is what children do, and are taking it all in their stride. They have been giving me extra hugs and kisses though. They say they are a bit sad about me being in hospital but understand it will help make me well. We’re looking at the longterm gain here. Going for a cure!


sister outlaws said...

So great to read the update. I have been thinking about you. Sounds like your family are doing well. Laughed a lot about Cheater Man (I have an ex-brother in law like that - he would even cheat against my intellectually disables sister!).

Liz said...

Fantastic news via FB about finding your sister can be a donor, Catherine!!! Sounds like the Plan Cure 2013 is now all systems go. I hope your medication side-effects settle down and that all goes as smoothly as possible with your chemotherapy. I had to smile at what you said about your girls - my boys were much the same, despite the fact that the family was separated for much of my treatment. They were both really happy at their Darwin school, with a lovely little gang of friends, and were confident that I was getting the best treatment, so they just kind of rolled on with their lives. Will be thinking of you (and checking for updates here and on FB when you're up to it) as you enter this next phase. All the very best to you and your family...Liz xx