Sunday, 2 May 2010

Chemo & MacMillan

I am very very happy to say that the last chemo (Cycle #3, treatment 1) was pain free!!
I opted to go just for a venflon in my hand/arm rather than another line as I just really couldnt face it. To stop the Dacarbazine being so painful they put the venflon in a bigger vein at my elbow, put a heatpack over my arm and black bagged up the tube of the drip (normally it's left in the daylight which is stupid since the bag the drug comes in has to be kept out of the light...). It all seemed to work THANK GOD!

The next day I came back to Huddersfield where I was at Uni. I just felt like a I needed a break from home. I'm writing this now, a week of being here and my god, I feel like a different person. There's been no hospital visits, prodding with needles, nurses or anything. I've seen people who I havent seen since I was diagnosed and they treated me like I was normal and for the first time in ages I felt normal (or as normal as I possibly could!) Don't want to go home now as it will be back to reality!

I thought I'd write a little bit about my experience with MacMillan as I would reccommend them to anyone in a similar situation to me. One day I had a bit of breakdown after I had the picc line put it in because I was so fed up of it and of everything in general and told my mam I needed to talk to someone, someone who could understand how I felt. She phoned MacMillan and they put us in touch the local macmillan nurse who arranged to come and see me at my house to have a talk about what I wanted from them.

The lady that came round, Hilary, was lovely. She asked how I felt, what I wanted from them in terms of support and we dissused a few other things such as finances. She interestingly mentioned complimentary therapy I could have such as massage and aromatherapy so I was booked in for a session at the hospice and it was sooooooo good. I had a shoulder and head massage and came out feeling like a new person. (I've got 5 more sessions to go, woo!) Hilary also gave me a questionnaire to complete that was to assess how depressed/anxious I was and she gave me lots of papers on tips to relax. We arranged another session for the following week where we discussed the questionnaire which showed I was showing more signs of anxiety so she talked me through some ways to cope with this (and may I say I've had no more 'attacks' since! :)) We completed a form to apply for a macmillan grant for some money to go on holiday so I should be recieving a cheque for that soon. I'm due to see her again after hopefully my last chemo so I shall let you know how that goes.

At the moment I'm feeling good. I can see a glimmer, albeit a small one, but still a glimmer of light at the end of the long tunnel. After the next chemo on Friday I have the CT scan on the 10th and then the PET scan the following week so I need everyone in the world to cross their fingers and toes that I don't need anymore treatment!

Until next time :) xxx


  1. Hi Lauren,
    Glad to know you are coping and the MacMillan nurse was helpful. It is a sign of great strength that you were able to ask for help when you needed it. Hope you will have a brilliant holiday when your treatment is finished.
    Your blog entries have been very helpful for me to read.
    Leo has had his 6th chemo and will have scan next week my fingers and toes are crossed for you both.
    best wishes,

  2. Hi Anne. Good luck to Leo for next week. Hope it all goes well. Which scan is it?
    I have my CT scan tomorrow and then if the results are good I get the PET scan the following week.
    Getting ever so closer to that light at the end of the tunnel. Thinking of you both x

  3. Hi Lauren,
    Sending you lots of positive energy and thoughts for your CT scan today. One step nearer recovery and getting your life back. You should be very proud of yourself for how you are dealing with this.
    Leo has his CT scan on Friday, then 6 more chemos. He had a pretty rough day yesterday and I ended up crying when I was trying to comfort him. its hard for us mums to see our babies (no matter how grown up) go through this suffering. I'm sure your mum feels the same.
    Big cyber hug and good luck for today.
    Anne x