Yesterday it was time for my biopsy results. I was mentally preparing myself for the worst, let’s be honest, I haven’t really had any good news during this journey. So I was ready. I wasn’t sure how I was going to react but I was in fight mode. Walking into my oncologists office I felt sick, I thought I was going to pass out. As soon as I looked up he met me with a lovely big smile. I knew instantly it was going to be good news. I had got used to ‘the face’. It was indeed good news. The biopsy revealed there were no cancer cells even though the PET scan had revealed it was a hot spot. So officially at the moment I’m NED (no evidence of disease) but as we all know with melanoma, it can be hiding and just not big enough to reveal itself. So I’m trying not to celebrate too much yet. I’m only on cycle 7 out of 18 treatments. Nearly half way there!!!!!!
On Timehop the photo popped up. 10 years ago. 10 years ago I had bragged to the world that I was stupid enough to burn my skin to a crisp. But I justified it with a good day out on a boat. Reading this back mad me angry and my immediate thought was…what a fool. It got me thinking. If I could give advice to myself 10 years earlier, what would that be? It’s all in my poem. X
Yesterday I got my PET scan results. Not as clear as I had hoped. Basically there is a hot spot in my right axilla. This needs investigating. So next week I will go for another needle biopsy. I’m just so over this. It’s totally relentless. I haven’t had a break for seven months. I just want the old Adele back I miss her. Surely I can catch that break soon?? Reflecting on everything I think I need to speak to a professional. I need to look after my mental health. It will help me come to terms with all of the emotional turmoil I’ve been carrying. Here is a poem I wrote about my experience.
Last week I went for my 7th cycle of immunotherapy. However we had to postpone it as my white blood cell count was quite low. My oncologist also found a lump in my thigh which he wanted to investigate. That has since been declared benign thank god! However today was PET scan time. It’s always an anxious time getting the scan and waiting for the results. I get my results tomorrow…fingers crossed all is ok! X
I’m still here….7 days on. I was moved out of ICU and now in a normal room. Monday was a HUGE challenge for me. One of the antibiotics that they had been injecting me with was extremely irritating my veins. Every time the nurse walked in with the syringe I would almost have a panic attack. The pain was excruciating. So on Monday all I could focus on was the clock. Counting-down and dreading the next injection. I was a mess. I couldn’t stop crying with anxiety. I couldn’t speak to anyone, I shut down. I hit the lowest point I have hit since all of this began.
On Monday evening it was decided to look for another site for the cannula. My right arm is out of bounds, so only my left arm to work with…then the mention of my leg. I freaked out. Anyway, a lovely nurse was able to calm me down and we managed to find a new site higher up my arm. That was 4 days ago and so far so good!!! Here is a poem a wrote about the experience.
Yesterday morning I woke up at 5am in the worst pain. My body shivered, every joint ached, head pounded and my heart was pumping fast. I stumbled to the bathroom to find myself lying on the freezing cold tiles. If I stood up I knew I would be sick. hours later I was the same, only this time vomiting. My heart rate wouldn’t go below 100. I noticed a rash on my leg. I called the dr and he told me to get to the hospital. By the time I got there I had a high fever. I had to wait to be seen in a consultant room as the staff were afraid I had covid-19. It turns out I was very sick. Cellulitis had progressed to sepsis. I’m still in hospital now and will likely be here for another 5-6 days.
Since being diagnosed, I’ve never mentioned the cancer word to my children. They are too young to understand. All they know is that mummy has some bad skin that has made me sick. I wrote this poem so that one day they can look back and understand why I made the decision to protect them from the horrible truth.
Since my diagnosis I’ve looked at the sun and sunbathing in a different way. I used to be a sun worshiper. Whenever I had the chance I would lay in the sun. I wouldn’t tan, just burn and peel. I never learned. Until now.
As the weather is glorious in the UK, I watch on social media numerous posts of people sitting in their garden, soaking up the rays. I’ve seen some posts of people showing off their tan lines and even their sunburns. I watch and I feel sick. Just because this was me. Even up until last year. I knew the warnings, but I refused to listen. Maybe it’s too late for me. Don’t let it be too late for you.
I am often asked the question ‘will you lose your hair?’ People automatically think of chemotherapy when I say I’m having cancer treatment. When I tell them I’m receiving immunotherapy it starts a whole new discussion. So I decided to try and write an educational poem to describe what it is. I wanted to keep it short and not too technical. I hope this helps people to understand what immunotherapy does.
May 13th 2020 I completed cycle 5 of my immunotherapy. I was happily informed by my oncologist that we are now quarter way through the treatment. After cycle 6 I will have scans to see if everything is ok. Today was also a special day for me. On May 13th 2019 I lost a very special lady, my lovely nan. It’s been one year since her passing. It was weird but I felt her presence more than ever today. She was with me, holding my hand. I wasn’t afraid and it was the first time during treatment that I didn’t cry. Here is a poem I wrote.