Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Hey Cancer.... you messed with the wrong girl!

As I sit here on the couch tonight I think about the milestone I have just achieved.  Exactly 84 days ago I commenced my very first Chemotherapy treatment.  I recall the days following my first session and I thought there was no way in the world I was going to get through another 5 treatments.  In fact, there was a time I thought the Chemo itself might kill me.  So as you can imagine I am quietly (albeit feeling a little nauseas) celebrating my 5th round of Chemotherapy treatment.  It is hard to describe exactly the emotion I am feeling - actually if you can recall the closing scene in Flashdance when she is dancing to 'What a Feeling'.... this would be pretty close!  I remember very clearly when it was 1 treatment down and 5 to go and now I am 5 treatments down and 1 to go!!!!

With only 1 treatment remaining my Dad is already planning a party to be held up in the Chemo suite on my last day - I hope The Mount is ready for it! ha ha  So nice of them to be feeling the way I am also... bring on the celebrations!  I saw a t-shirt just recently which read 'My wife's/daughter's/sister's/friend's battle is my battle' (there are a few variations so I listed them all) and I couldn't agree more.  Everyone has been there for me every step of the way and to this day I still think about ways of trying to repay everyone for their unconditional support.

My lovely Mum joined me for today's Chemo session and it was nice just chatting.  Of course, Dad couldn't keep away so he popped in and Ryan also had a break from work and popped in to see me.  I am so lucky to have so much love and support.  It makes me very sad when I see the other patients arriving by themselves to have their treatment and I just hope that it was their decision to come on their own.  

As much as I wish I wasn't going through this for my family's sake I am so grateful we have our little girls as they keep me very busy and distracted which definitely takes my mind off things.  In fact I have to share a funny story that happened last week!  I was playing hairdressers with Jasmine and Baylee and we were taking it turns putting plaits and clips in their hair.  After they had had a few turns I said what about Mummy's hair and I took my scarf off.  Jasmine laughed and said 'but you don't have any hair Mummy - silly billy'! but Baylee's eyes widened and she said 'oh no, where has your hair gone Mummy!!' (even through she sees me bald every day) and I replied 'I don't know what happened to it - where has it gone' and she says 'Daddy took it away' (Ryan was the one who shaved my head) and I said 'where did he put it' and she says 'In the bin - I will go and get it'!!!  I couldn't help but have a good laugh :)

I have been very fortunate to be involved in a couple of special morning teas held this month to raise much needed funds for Breast Cancer Research.  A couple of weeks ago my lovely Burswood colleagues held a morning tea and Jaz and I went along to see everyone and to enjoy the yummy food :)  We had a great time and lots of money was raised.  We had a nice group photo taken which might be printed in the Burswood staff magazine - and I have attached this below!

Ryan and I also held a 'pink' morning tea last week with our families and a couple of friends.  It was a lovely morning and we raised $520 in just over an hour.  Great effort by all!  I have also attached below a couple of pics.

Speaking of events, Ryan and I were very fortunate to be invited to the Lexus Ball which raises funds for Telethon.  We had a fantastic evening and got to rub shoulders with some of the stars attending Telethon!!  It was so nice to get frocked up, enjoy a beautiful meal, have a glass of bubbly and a dance :)  

I would also like to make special mention of my sister's friend Nicki Turner who recently took part in the Relay for Life event which raises money for cancer research.  She decided to 'walk for me' and I am so very honoured by this touching gesture.  She raised $320 on the day!  Thank you so much Nicki :)

I am currently reading Dr Ian Gawler's book called 'You Can Conquer Cancer'.  I am finding it very interesting and wanted to share a paragraph with you that I often think about:
'It is known that throughout the lifetime of every healthy person, cancerous cells develop in their body.  This is a medically accepted fact.  It also is accepted that the body normally recognises these abnormal cells as a potential threat to its health and acts quickly to isolate and destroy them.  It does so before any physical symptoms become apparent.  However, in cancer patients, this does not happen and the growths continue unopposed.  The body offers no resistance and symptoms of cancer are the result.'

It still saddens me to think that I am fighting breast cancer.  As naive as this may sound I still think of it as an older woman's disease - which I know sounds ridiculous!  I am trying to remain very positive but it is hard sometimes - so many thoughts running through your head (and sometimes they aren't positive) but I just have to keep reminding myself that yes this really sucks but there is nothing I can do about it and I just need to keep moving forward and focus on finishing all of my treatment.   I often think - why did this have to happen? and not just happen to me but to anyone?  Gosh, life can be unfair sometimes.  I just hope the money that we all raise will be put to good use and the cause and subsequent cure will be found very soon.  :(  I mostly have good days now but I can't deny that some days I just put on a brave face and try and be as bubbly as possible so no-one picks up on my sadness.

Chemo - Round 4 
Wed 5th October 2011

Lexus (Telethon Ball)
Sat 15th October 2011

Burswood Team
Pink Ribbon Morning Tea

Mum, Liz, Me and Dad
Pink Ribbon Morning Tea