Wednesday, October 31, 2007

A Year Ago and Tomorrow

A year ago I was thinking about my forthcoming BCG treatment, wondering how it would affect me and being worried about those who dropped out of their treatment.

I am really quite nervous about my meeting with my Consultant tomorrow. In a way I am looking forward to seeing her and understanding what the results are and what happens next. I'm not sure how I am going to react to whatever news they may have.

Will I be elated, bitterly disappointed, unfazed or what. Only tomorrow will tell. If it is good news - I hope that I don't blub! Perhaps walk home with a stupid grin on my face.

It is really strange how I feel - I am on a bit of a high given the news earlier today on the job front. But do I feel all excited / nervous because of that or tomorrow?

I'll let you know tomorrow.

Well that is the job sorted

I went into the week with two outcomes to the last two days. I'd have a job or I'd get sacked. The former is the outcome and I am quite pleased about that of course.

In fact the result is really even better than that as I am now the COO of the company which is pretty exciting and pretty daunting all at the same time.

So given how I was a year ago - I don't really suppose I could have expected this outcome.

Blimey - waiting for it to sink in.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

A hard day at the office


That wasn't particularly pleasant. It wasn't intended to be - I just had a meeting that can only be described as mildly confrontational and at sometimes crackling with electric as we strongly voiced our opinions and concerns. The upshot is that the issues and problems are out on the table and tomorrow we can get on and do something about them.

Even better is that I will be asked to get heavily involved and sort this out. Enough said for the moment. Another day full tomorrow. At least it keeps me busy and not thinking about Thursday's appointment.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Next few days

Are going to be hectic as I meet up with the guys from HQ and go through the operational plans.

I doubt I'll get much time to do much here so that will give you a rest :-)

It is a crazy week really as I have so many things to get on with and this set of meetings are going to be tough as well. At least when they are over it will be time to go and get my results and find out another bit of my future.

This is the sort of week that will fly past because I'll be so busy.

Rather that than stuck doing nothing I suppose!

Getting your life back

It is probably too early to think about that but on Thursday will I get a nod that says you can go and rebuild your life and get on with things knowing that this is what happened to you before and here is what is going to happen to you from now on?

In a way I'm slightly dreading going - I'm not sure how I will take whatever news they have for me. As I said in the previous post, perhaps it will be the impetus I need to snap out of my inactivity and sort out lots of these things that are just getting left on my desk "to be done"?

I think this time it isn't survivor's syndrome as I feel quite good about myself and I still have a very positive attitude. I'm certain it is that I am just getting nervous about the appointment on Thursday and what the outcome of that may be.

It would be good to start re-building though and to be a little bit more in control of the situation.

Passing the Milestones

Nothing I hope like passing any other sort of stones given my condition :-)

I was thinking about the fact that, I "think" I know what I am going to be told on Thursday and yet, in reality, I cannot second guess this. It is an important step to be told what is going on and to then be able to plan.

So at the moment, whilst I believe it is good news and all the indications are good, until I actually hear what my Consultant says, all bets are off. I am really in a state of limbo and unable to plan as I don't know what she is going to say to me. If it is good news then I can guess that I'll go onto Maintenance. If it is bad news then I will have to look to be doing something else.

It may be just an excuse for my inactivity it may actually be what is causing me to be like I am at the moment which is uncharacteristically indecisive, procrastinating and just not getting things finished or delaying getting things started.

I am sure that getting the answers and then knowing which way to turn will be a major milestone and will free my mind from all this conjecture and will allow me to plan ahead a bit more.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

I Wonder

How many people find out that life has changed after a serious illness or some sort of event - perhaps escaping a plane crash or something like that?

I say that only in as much as I have changed and yet, family and friends have stopped me going off and doing something else. I considered that perhaps I would like to travel or live somewhere else and then realised that I would still need to have medical attention for a while yet. The considerations of enjoying the work I do are also now paramount. I do enjoy this job but if it ends tomorrow well, I can go and find something rewarding to do rather than just go for the money.

I'd somehow have felt that I would throw myself into other projects but I just don't have the energy to do them. I get easily distracted and I can (and have) sat here all day and done nothing and then wondered where the day went to. I'm still therefore not as fit mentally or physically as I think I am. Not to say that I am still ill, just not as well as my brain thinks I am.

I think that the trouble is I still feel 20 years (or more) younger than I am - my brain tells me I can climb Mount Everest and my body can hardly ascend the stairs (a bit of an exaggeration but you get the gist).

So - the mind is willing but the body is weak. I'll know this week what my future holds and perhaps then I can get some plans together and actually action them!

Whatever it takes

I've said a couple of times that despite my own squeamish nature, some of the posts in this blog are a little - well - grizzly - to say the least.

I suppose that you get a little blase about what happens to you as everyone else who has this also has these treatments and tests and challenging moments.

I remember talking to my brother and hearing him go very quiet at the end of the phone and my Mother also seeing her quite horrified by what I'd be telling her. I wouldn't tell my Dad as he would pass out :-) He and I share the same hate of anything medical!

So an apology that this blog is quite graphical in that respect and back to the title.

I was just feeling very sorry for my bladder, my prostate and my wedding tackle! My bladder has been scrapped and scratched and had cancer, followed by having to heal it self from all the scars and scabs and then - what did they do? They instilled chemicals into the bladder that are highly toxic and just when it recovers from that they take some more cuts and stick some more of this BCG in as well. It is a bit of a "Sledgehammer" and I think my Doctor called it brutal and rough.

Then every time they have inserted anything into me my Prostate has had to take a pounding and frankly because of the peculiar way the urethra is configured the insertion of anything tends to straighten that out and it needs to go back to where it originally was set.

So all in all - it feels like getting kicked in the crotch many times a year. Perhaps if all is OK it will have been worth it? I would hate to have gone through all of this just to find that you were back to square one. Some people do of course.

Given all of that - to be better you do have to do "whatever it takes"

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Someone else I know with cancer woes

I met with an acquaintance yesterday and I had heard that he hadn't felt particularly well.

He has had a set of biopsies for Prostate Cancer and won't find out the results until Friday. Perhaps it is my age and so everyone around me that I'd know are more likely to start getting diseases like this. I suppose there will come a time when everyone around me is dying too.

However, I've sort of said that I'll be happy to discuss things if he wanted and that being diagnosed isn't as serious as not finding out until it is too late.

I suppose it is only natural to focus on the negatives, like I did, when you are this early in on your cancer diagnosis. It needs a lot more of us Cancer survivors to offer some support at this point in time for our friends. I really could have done with someone to talk to early on

I hope he wants to talk and that I can spend some time discussing it with him, I can also introduce him to my friends who have been through this to sort of explain what it is about and how it affected them. Like all such things, there is another dimension to this in that he is getting married in the New Year.

Someone used that cliche again yesterday that "why is it only the good guys who get cancer?" A strange thing to say - almost complimentary in a weird way :-)

Friday, October 26, 2007

The party goers have all gone

The place is a mess, there is jelly and ice cream everywhere, ripped wrapping paper, spilt drinks, half eaten pastries and the smell of beer going stale in plastic cups!

No - not really, but it is the end of our 1st birthday and time to hit the sack and see what next year brings us. It has been eventful - losing my dream job and then convincing myself to do this one. Ups and downs in my health that really were preventable and coming to terms with it all.

Tonight I have just finished preparing for a big meeting tomorrow - I am a Secretary of a Lodge and with about 200 people turning up tomorrow - things can get exciting! The good news is that I have finished working as there is a new guy taking on the DC role. He has done a lot of the work that I used to do. this is good as normally I would be up until 4 in the morning completing his work and mine.

I am looking forward to tomorrow. It will be hard work but I will meet some good friends and I'll be "asked after" which is very nice.

Finally my friend who had cancer at the same time as I did was on the phone this morning and he just wanted a rant down the phone. It is incredible just how angry people make us these days. It can get quite frustrating having to deal with people who ask dumb questions but don't listen correctly to the answers, who have trouble thinking "off script" and who are just basically dumb arses :-)

I think we were having the "is it me, or is this bloke an idiot?" type call. We were discussing Employment Agents and Agencies. I was impressed that there is new evidence to state that you can now use Agents in place of Rats and Guinea Pigs in medical research because the Scientists don't get so attached to them!

Right off to bed a big day tomorrow and I hope an enjoyable one too.

Anniversary Stat

There have been 1063 posts in the past year! That is not far short of three for each day.

Blimey :-) I wonder if they accidentally injected me with a Quill?

Happy Birthday Dear Blog

I have to say a big Thank you to my friend KP – thanks K for getting me to do this blog – it has been helpful in so many ways and it has been therapeutic. Listen up readers, that is the sort of help your friends give you that is invaluable and practical and you can leave the sympathy in one corner and deliver me that sort of support anytime.

So big breath....

Happy Birthday to you
Happy Birthday to you
Happy Birthday dear Blo – og
Happy Birthday to you

I reckon that we ought to have a series of highlights like they do on TV of the best moments from the blog (my best moments that is). You can always use the comment field to vote for your favourite if you are that way inclined.

Scar Wars – Where it all started really

The Prequel – Not named Scar Wars I for some reason and published after Scar Wars II & III

The recovery

Scar Wars II – Revenge of the NHS

The recovery II

Scar Wars III - The Sting in the Tale (or Tail)

Scar Wars IV - Delayed

Scar Wars IV – A Scrape in Time

Scar Wars V – the one without a sub title

Some of the funnier stuff

Kicking the Bucket and squeezing your balls

or the Flying Catheter

At least the Hospital knows the difference

Book or blog titles

Bladder Farts

My Favourite and one dedicated to KP who takes credit for getting me up to write the blog – He wasn’t sure what you needed bleach for when you were being treated His line of questioning made an assumption that you used bleach on your todger. To KP I dedicate this answer!

And Finally with the Olympics in mind I leave you with Peeing for England

The events of the past 15 months have altered the way I feel about myself and all those around me, how I interact with my world and how I express myself. I’m glad to have had the opportunity to share my experiences and I’ll continue the blog as long as it serves the dual purpose of healing me and bring help and I hope some enjoyment to others.

Here is a little test for you to do

I am an INTJ personality type. Earlier in the week, given that I took this test 3 years ago, my friend and I decided that we felt that we had changed our personalities because of having lived through cancer Well – spookily enough I haven’t.

That really surprised me as I would have said my attitude had changed incredibly but that’s my attitude not the way I think and act. So how about you?

Finally, in the past year I have learnt to understand my condition and to roll with the shots. Even now, when I think I have climbed the next hill and gotten off the Roller Coaster, something else comes along and challenges that. It really isn’t something that you had yesterday and is gone today. Cancer isn’t the frightening and scary word it used to be – not nice but it isn’t as you expect it to be.

I am impressed with how much I have moved on and with how well I am compared to just a year ago. Then I was just about to start BCG treatment for CIS, I was warned to expect things to be quite shocking and I ended up working from home most of the time. Now, the CIS has gone, the precancerous areas have gone and it looks as if the next stages will be to make sure that it never comes back again. I hope so, I hope life changes to become less of a daily think about bladder cancer, how it affects me and what it does to me and more about living, getting on with life and building on the blessings I’ve had thus far.

A friend questioned whether I actually thought I would die. The answer is that yes I did early on, then I found out more and realised that I could survive this and I was expecting to have radical stuff done to make that happen and gradually I came back from that brink over the period of the treatments and those dangers are receding.

A thought passed through my head driving this week that as I passed through the lovely countryside with its autumns colours, the thought questioned how many Autumns I would see. The number 15 popped into my head. A year ago I would have settled for that, now I would be severely disappointed it that were the case. However it did make me think that I should appreciate everything that much more as I have probably seen more Autumns than I am going to.

On that sober note. I leave wishing you happy 1 year’s reading and let's do it again this coming year.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Beginning to relax a bit now

All is clear again and so I am beginning to relax. The hesitation in going to the toilet is strange - almost as if catching your breath I often wonder why you'd do that considering that there isn't an awful lot you can do if you happen to be bleeding anyway. Strange.

So I am hopeful of continued progress. I really wanted to go to London to see a friend of mine receive his London Honours up at United Grand Lodge. I cancelled just in case. A hard decision but a realistic one when it comes to it.

I had quite forgotten that my wife and youngest were off to see Billy Elliott this evening in London so I have spent the evening at home. I thought that I would catch up on some of my films on DVD but the phone has been ringing off the hook this evening.

Next time perhaps.

A big day tomorrow

Yes I can hardly wait. It is the Blog's first birthday. There will be a special blog entry tomorrow to mark the fact and I guess some celebration too. I can't imagine that jelly and ice cream are going to be on the party table but perhaps a retrospective instead.

Clear Again and an interesting thing

Thankfully today was clear again and so I am getting a little more confidence that it was my own stupid fault I was bleeding again last weekend. You never stop learning and everyone says "take you time" and yet I felt I was fit enough to start exercising again.

Anyway, so things are better - great.

Now the interesting thing. Do you think that your personality type changes after you have been through a traumatic or life threatening experience?

I would have said yes, it does. My friend on Tuesday also felt that he had changed. Well, here is the surprise. I re-did my Myers Brigg test and surprisingly I am still the same type INTJ. Certain percentages have changed but not massively. My friend too has changed very little except in one area. The "J" part is Judgmental - both of us showed a rise in this area.

So, what has changed then? I guess attitude. I need to ask my daughter who is taking Psychology to tell me why this would be.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Off Limits

No matter how much I pour myself into this blog, there are bits that are bound not to appear, there are blogs that I have written, read the next day and pulled and there are many that just never get past the edit.

It is pretty obvious then that there was a blog I wrote a minute ago that didn't get to be published and that is because it goes too deep or opens me up too much or is, in my view, very personal about myself or my family.

Over the past year I like to think that these have been kept to a minimum and I reckon 20 would be about right.

So the earlier blog - was about insurance and payouts and then got morbid and didn't seem relevant somehow. Others would be where my soul would be fully on view or the very black stuff from a long time back. I think it would be fair to mention it and refer loosely to it but to share some of it really isn't for here.

So with this rather sombre blog I'll close for the night.

Something is paved with good intentions

I wasn't going to do any work today was I! Well by 10 O'clock, there were e-mails to deal with and then a couple of contracts and a letter of intent, someone hadn't got an address so I had to find that and suddenly it was 4 O'clock and the pile of stuff I was promising myself to do is still there.

I must make time for myself. If I learnt one thing it was that things can get done without me but, I look and act well so it is back to normal.

I am actually going to pack up now, walk away from the screens and go and sit downstairs and hopefully fall asleep for an hour I lost so much sleep last night and with the early calls this morning didn't really catch up.

If there is anything that I can say has changed in the past 15 months it is that my stamina isn't there any more. I know I am not fit but I can do something about that when they let me and I don't go off injuring myself. I eat properly and yet I get tired quickly. It takes a long time to repair your body and to get everything in balance. I've seen what can happen if you get any of these wrong and so I just have to be patient and build back slowly.

I also have to remind myself that I am 50 despite the act that my brain thinks I am 30 still.

That is better

A fitful night's sleep. Then two early morning phone calls which were enough to drive me mad - both people who had forgotten something and needed to ask me what to do! So up with the lark and so much for a lie in today :-)

I'm still clear this morning and I am taking a day off of work and concentrating on resting and relaxing as everyone else in the company are on training duties!!

One of the callers wanted me to pop into London which I declined.

Hoping for a good - quiet and restful day

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Perhaps cancel all engagements

I am seriously considering not doing a couple of things I have planned for later this week. I have something on at the weekend that I must do and I need to make sure I am ready for that. I was planing to go to London later this week but, really, if I am honest with myself, perhaps I ought not to do it.

It will mean letting a friend down but then I know he will understand why.

I just caught myself running up the stairs and thinking afterwards - FOOL! I just don't feel ill or anything I actually feel very well and so making myself slow down and taking it easy just don't work.

A blip NOT a setback

So I am reliably informed by a friend of mine. A blip is something minor which this is.

I was out with my friend who had cancer and we had a very long and enjoyable lunch. He now knows what has been giving him a rough time and that is great as he can work towards sorting that out

I am happily peeing as normal and have been all day. It is quite a relief I can tell you.

I should have been at the Out patients today but that is now next week so I suppose that is some relief, I can explain what happened and probably will get told off for not taking things easy!!

Feeling a lot better and my mate and I set the worlds to right, had a nice lunch and a couple of beers and coffees. A nice day and so far even better without any traces of blood or anything else.

Overnight Report

All is OK this morning - I had a couple of trips to the toilet - drinking as much as I do these days, an overnight visit isn't unusual The late night and early morning ones are clear, the first one wasn't but it also wasn't a bad one.

Today I am taking it easy and seeing how I get on.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Blimey - done it again

Some more bleeding and a few bits of debris.

Bit of an idiot and should have taken it easy tonight. Will monitor this and take some action if it carries on I actually think that I need to consider doing a bed rest day or two to stop this and also plenty of liquids.

I knew I'd overdone it as soon as I carried those cases up the stairs.

Trying to take it easy

Not as easy as you think though. I just humped three heavy bags up the stairs before I thought about what I was doing!

I go back to some of my earlier blogs that mention how you don't feel unfit or even look it until you try something that you really shouldn't have done.

As someone said to me tonight it is a bit like a hysterectomy (I didn't think it was but his words not mine!) Told not to pick up things or do anything for 6 weeks, you feel OK, lift something and put yourself back to where you started and begin all over again!

I hope that I have learnt my lesson!

Ongoing but minor

Well it appears that generally things have settled down although a large lump came flying out a little earlier - at least nothing like Saturday's episode. I wonder if being hunched up over my desk isn't helping? I need to be drinking more liquid but don't tend to do that in the office.

At least I am out for some of the day tomorrow. I'm with my friend who has had and gotten rid of his Cancer problems - but not the aftermath and the Black Dog bits.

It will be an interesting day of discussing treatments, how we feel, how our brains are coping and so on.

I'm looking forward to getting out and perhaps cheering myself up a bit. I haven't lost my general cheery outlook but my confidence did take a sever knock with this last episode.

Even Keel

Today all appears to be back to normal. Shaken of course, but I can pull through that - it was quite a shock I gave myself there and a reminder of what I went through for close to three weeks prior to being diagnosed. It is the little hesitancy you place on yourself as you are about to go to the toilet and the slight worry in case anything else decides to fall out of your body :-)

Oh well, that is gone and I am back to getting on with work. A distraction that I really need.

I am planning on taking it easy this week anyway and so hope that sufficient rest will also heal whatever damage I managed to do to myself.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

A quiet Sunday

I did take it easy and only once did I get any more problems which was just a bit of debris. All appears to be clear and all appears to have settled down.

I'm still not greatly confident and somewhat hesitant going to the toilet. I will just have to take it a little easy over the next few days and make sure I don't do anything strenuous.

Off to bed now - I need some rest and to catch up on what I missed out last night with the "worry".

The calm after the storm

At least I hope it is.

During the night, it must have been about 2, I went to the toilet and there was a large clot and some blood but end of stream. This morning, well it looks clear, possibly some traces, but otherwise OK.

Today is going to be a take it easy day. So far, so good and I hope that it stays that way. I just need to rest and drink plenty of liquids and hope that whatever it was sorts itself out. I can actually feel some palpitations and a very slight soreness which I need to make sure are no more than that or else I'll be taking myself off to A&E pretty smartish.

This has happened before so I am not quite in panic mode but it did get me close yesterday.

I'll be seeing the Consultant the week after next and so I will mention it. However, I know she has always said to expect this. Perhaps I need to be a bit more patient and not to have expected to get back up to the level of exercise I was doing earlier on in the year? I certainly didn't jump on the cross trainer this morning :-)

Well there is a start - at least I got my sense of humour back - they can't take that away from you!

Sleepless Night

I don't think it is worry that is keeping me awake. I've pretty much come to terms with the fact that this is what I should expect given that they cut a number of slices out of my bladder.

Logic and common sense are taking over but of course they make your brain whir and with that keep me awake. It has gone 1 and I've been awake for a couple of hours. I will have another go at getting some sleep in a minute.

What a day!

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Revenge of the Black Dog

Well I had written the last blog entry and all seemed OK.

Went to the toilet and a full stream of blood and bits came out non stop, it was horrendous and catapulted me back to the early days. There was blood everywhere and the shock of it rocked me. There were lots of bits of all sizes and dark blood not traces this time. I know that a little blood goes a long way when it is watered down but this looked just like how it had when I first got the symptoms. Ugh!

To say I was in pieces might be an understatement. It was pretty horrible and I couldn't believe it, it was as if the last 15 months hadn't happened. It took quite a while to gather myself together and go back down stairs as we were just about to watch the Rugby World Cup Final and wife and daughters were sitting there. I guess my eyes were a bit puffy and red when I got downstairs and no doubt I looked as white as a sheet - I do when I get a shock or feel ill.

C noticed straight away and I told her privately what had happened. I drunk a couple of pints of water and watched the game. So far everything is clear. I have resolved just to take things very easy for the next few days. I can't imagine that it is anything serious now, given that there has been no repetition and I have been a number of times.

How fragile my mind is though, I was in blind terror when I saw this again. I can't even begin to explain to you what it looks like or feels like.

The Black Dog shook me about and even now I catch myself hesitating to go to the toilet and feel my heart beating a little faster than it should and the tears are subsiding but that really wasn't a great couple of hours to live through.

Unfortunately your brain jumps to conclusions, if it had continued, how long do I wait before taking myself down to A&E etc.

I am off to bed now - I hope I can sleep. Not surprisingly I will not be exercising tomorrow or for a few days as I take things easy. I'll talk to the consultant, my guess is that it isn't particularly unusual and lets face it - I had this sort of thing (on a very much smaller scale than this) before. Maybe they took larger biopsies to be absolutely sure?

Whatever, it brought me back to earth with one hell of a bump and I haven't been this upset for perhaps a year or more. I'm obviously not as mentally strong as I thought I was, I must be aware of that going forward. I still feel a little tearful but nowhere near as bad at the moment. I can feel the slight sting of the blood still but it isn't painful.

Well, lets see how I fare overnight. I really wasn't expecting this sort of day or the shock of that. Take it easy, plenty of drinking and perhaps I can get back on course.

And another

After a few more clears - another one.

I don't think anything to worry about particularly as this has happened before. It just turns you over seeing the sort of thing tat used to be frequent and concerning - again.

Taking it as easy as I can at the moment to make sure that I don't aggravate it.

Spoke too soon

Another scab came flying out with associated debris and blood. It is weird and and disturbing all at the same time. Again, it sort of shook me for a few seconds but then the stream went back to normal and so all is OK. Drinking a lot of fluid today and taking it easy.

I am up to 20 minutes exercise a day - could it be that? I doubt it, just nature taking its course. If I was bleeding then I'd definitely stop doing anything. That happened last year and I took things easy for a day or two and was fine.

Anyway - it is the weekend and I don't feel ill or anything - it is just something to monitor I suppose.

Well that brought me back to earth with a shock

I had two "OMG" moments last night (OMG Oh My God!!)

I went to the toilet and it was strange but I suddenly felt that something had happened and I looked down and there was a bit of debris in the pan and then a small trickle of blood diluted.

Now I "should" know what this is - how many times have I been in Hospital? But the brain doesn't remember that first off does it? Because of the association with what blood actually meant prior to diagnosis - your brain goes there. Quite how it made the leap to think that I could possibly have tumours in my bladder where 18 days earlier all was clear is not certain.

I rationalised this afterwards. The next time I went was horrible as three huge chunks of debris (probably scabs) came out along with lots of little bits and again a diluted rusty coloured urine. This is , believe me, enough to make you recoil in horror.

Of course these are just the scabs from the biopsies coming away and so they are only signs of the bladder wall healing itself. I imagine my bladder has probably had enough of being cut, scraped and generally subjected to pretty awful chemical attacks - bless it!

So it was quite a relief, last night and this morning to have no debris or any colouration in my urine.

What a relief even though I know what this should be.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Too Young to Die

That's a strange thing to say. You hear it a lot. I often want to ask what is the right age then?

English is a peculiar language.

Thursday, October 18, 2007


I'm still really positive about everything and still feeling on top of it. I need to get a bit more structure back in to every day life and I need to work on work / life balance as I haven't got that right yet. I am actually taking time out to do more things and get out more. I'm off to London to meet some old friends tonight and that combined with a meeting just before that will allow me to get a bit of business done before having a great time out with my mates.

Life gets back to normal but it takes a while to get back into it that's all.


Back up to 20 minutes a day now and that stretched my muscles around my stomach a bit. I can feel everything beginning to get tightened up already which is great. It is amazing how little it takes to get you feeling better.

Now to get my diet under control and I can start to improve on this.

I'm reckoning that I can be somewhere around my fighting weight by Christmas if I lose my weight gradually. I must have lost a few kilos already this past 2 weeks. I'm sure I'll have to have a set of treatments before then as well. They may break some of the momentum for me but I hope not too much.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

The Ecess of Youth

Well not quite youth but I did have a real blow out meal this evening

Cream os Asparagus soup, Duck in a Cherry sauce (OK boiled potatoes and veg) but then a rather innocent looking pastry but afterwards followed by cheeses that have enough fat in them to turn your arteries into rock!

That is it for a few weeks - I have another one of these meals in a few weeks. However, I hope to have worked off this lot of excess by then!

It is all one big Merry go Round - you do a lot of good things for a few weeks and go and wipe it all out with a massive meal :-) I'm sure it isn't really like that but there needs to be some balance in all of this. I'm just not sure how you balance enjoying yourself with the other need of making sure you are living healthily.

Balance is the answer. Just what is the balance though?

Back to exercising

I felt confident enough today to get back onto the cross trainer and give it 10 minutes on a steady programme. It was just enough to get me back to a regime of exercise and to support proper eating.

I haven't started to go back to doing all of the measurements yet as today is just about the last day I am out and eating a big dinner - 4 courses!! So I thought, perhaps it is better that I start taking measurements of progress next week when I am clear of the excesses of today.

I've gone back to being careful with what I eat, I've not gone overboard this time and I am not going to be doing more than a weekly check as it just doesn't make sense to get paranoid about a daily fluctuation. I am again cutting down on bread intake and having a lot of soup which is made at weekends and used up during the week. I am also making sure I get a proper balance and as my GP told me to ensure that I lose weight gradually not in huge drops.

I feel quite good considering the layoff I've had from exercising. I hope that continues.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Amusing Stories out of Sad ones

At the weekend we went to the Christening of a surviving twin and I took the family to the grave side - very sad.

But it was really a double celebration as besides the Christening one of their family were celebrating their 90th birthday and were with a group of elderly men and women. They asked to see the grave and one of the parents, quite bravely I think said to this little party, "This way, it is a short cut to the grave yard" at which point one of the octagenerians said "That's the last thing I want to hear at my age".

Well I thought it was funny but I do have a somewhat warped sense of humour.

Monday, October 15, 2007

You can read into things what you want

But here was a very strange thing. I got hold of some Orange Advocacy wrist bands which have Bladder Cancer Awareness on them. Well I try and wear mine occasionally - at one time I wore it quite a lot. Well it broke yesterday and I threw it in the bin.

I gave all the rest away so I don't have one now. Perhaps that will be a good ting and I won't remind myself or perhaps I don't need to wear a badge anymore. Or perhaps, I just read to much into these things and it broke because it was time for it to break :-)

Give me a good conspiracy theory any day - I love them.

Still uncomfortable

It has been two weeks since the op and I am still uncomfortable. I don't remember being this bad for this long last time. Perhaps they pulled me about a lot more to make doubly sure?

I suppose I ought to start blaming my age as well :-) Well I am 50. When I was a kid that was well - almost like dinosaur stuff. Of course now I am here it is of course a wonder quite where all those 50 years went to!

Why do simple things still annoy me?

I find some things really annoy me. How about the News. Yesterday, nothing else happened in the world apart from England won the rugby against France. There was obviously so little news of interest that our newspapers and TV screens were crowded out with this world shattering event.

Given that only about 25% of the world even know what Rugby is anyway, it just seemed utterly crazy that this merited front page news. Somewhere we must have lost our way if the talk of the day is about a sport, or some people of notoriety (I don't use the word celebrity as that surely is a person who is celebrated), and some Minor B list actors all trying to dance can also grab this morning's breakfast time news.

Dumbing down I can understand but why has the BBC News turned into Hello Magazine?

Of course, maybe it is just me?

Sunday, October 14, 2007

A Pleasant Sunday

We went to see my Friend's son christened. This is the surviving twin from the tragic death of the other one in July. I took the family to see the grave - very sad and then we went on to the Christening and a little party afterwards. It was a very nice affair and was enjoyable and another stepping stone for them. He has been told that he is now Cancer Free and they won't need to see him for another year. I think after that - he gets to be discharged - excellent, they could do with some good news.

It was a lovely autumn day, the trees are turning all sorts of great colours and leaves are dropping already. I don't suppose I was taking too much of that sort of scenery in last year.

I need to get out more often I've decided. I've used the house and the fact that I can work from home as a barrier and I need to change things around to force me to break any routines that I have gotten into.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Dreams and Demons

The dreams and the demons appear to have gone away and the Black Dog hasn't visited for quite a while either.

Work has taken a big part in my life this past few weeks and I am really getting "stuck into" getting things moving.

I still have doubts and a few worries but these are nothing like I used to have a year ago. These are more everyday things now and aren't important in the overall scheme of things.

I like to tell people that now when they complain over something trivial. A standard answer is "Well it isn't life threatening is it?" or when someone was seated incorrectly at a recent meal "Did it make the food taste strange then?" It never fails to surprise me how trivial we can all be sometimes.

I'm working out quite how to go forward balancing life and work. It is all a bit new to me and so I reckon, I just need to work at it.

Scar Wars V

Scar Wars V

Scar Wars Episode 5
(Cue Music)
In a Galaxy far, far away.
Our hero has fled from the hands of BCG and Bad Catheter
and once more finds himself trapped in the NHS Death Star.
The Bed Blockers impede the patient army in their quest to attain getitoverwith.
Meanwhile, the remains of the trashed cancer cells are hunted down and taken out in operation Och and Shaw.
Insurgents are hunted down by the BCG expeditionary forces of the NHS Trust’s coalition.
Our Hero faces his greatest challenge, can he overcome the mutating cells once and for all?
Read on if you dare......

No beds – and that on a Monday morning of all things. The waiting – of which I am quite used to wasn’t so bad as there weren’t that many to be admitted. I didn’t really get much time to go through my listening to music ritual as it would have helped me when the next bit of information hit me – that they would be talking me straight into Theatre. That is pretty nerve wracking in itself as you are walked past all the Theatres and prep rooms and straight into the recovery where people in various stages of recovery are coming around from their operations.

I am led to a cubicle to get changed and after slipping into something a little more Chic – well an operating gown and climbing onto the bed – I am check listed – having previously been consented at lunchtime by my Consultant herself. We go through the usual and my bag is tagged as am I with my ID. We go through the checklist again when they come to get me for the Operation and I am in a room with a lot of people this time. It starts with the Prep nurses, then the Anaesthetist and then another and another – this time we actually have quite a good laugh as the Anaesthetist and I have been joking about blunt Cannulas and also going off to Hawaii whilst I am under. The Cannula proves to be a good one – the best yet and I give 10 out of 10 for it as it hurts (of course) but doesn’t make me almost pass out like some have done in the past. We discuss my rather high pulse rate and I explain that whilst I like them – I don’t really find going on for Operations something that I look forward to in a stress free way.

The General Anaesthetic goes in and I get my Oxygen mask and get to breathe deeply. I feel the icy cold threads running up my arm and as the GA reaches towards my shoulder, I lose consciousness.

Coming around is easy this time, no fighting I am told and I get a nice ice cold drink of water through a straw. I don’t feel the need to pee (I have done on every other occasion) nor do I feel sore or pain in anyway. Within minutes of my recovery I am whisked off to the ward were mercifully I am given my own room. I detest being in a room of other people – that’s the trouble with Hospitals – they’re full of sick people, often much worse off than me (for which I am grateful) but I very rarely relax in these situations. So my own room is a luxury.

My consultant pops her head in and tells me that she can see nothing in the bladder, there are some pink marks which she thinks are to do with reactions to the BCG rather than anything sinister. She has taken biopsies and will see me when the results are back. She seems very chirpy and I am very happy to hear the news.

I am brought a meal which turns out to be quite a hot curry for a Hospital anyway. I am drinking jugs of water which I am going through as if there is some sort of water shortage coming. I know that if I can pee twice and that the Nurses are happy I can go home.

My wife turns up and I manage to go to the toilet and have a pee – nurse is impressed and so am I as it only hurt a little and didn’t sting as much as it might have done. I do a whole jug full – and only the tiniest traces of minor blood clots – no red urine at all – that is a massive relief. I expect to see more blood but realise that there has been no work done this time, there aren’t any areas that require it and it is only the biopsies that are causing any bleeding at all.

Shortly afterwards I produce yet another jug of pee – at this rate – I tell the nurse – I could be peeing for England at the next Olympics. They wont let me home and they say I’ll have to stay overnight – I protest weakly as they know best and I am in a room on my own so can sleep and not get disturbed or disturb others.

After two more amazing jugs full of pee – the Nurse behind the Station – which is just outside of my door – states – shame – if you had done that earlier you could have gone home. I smile to myself and resign myself to a night at the Hospital. I no longer need to pee into jugs and can go directly. As I have a private loo as well this helps as I am up and down quite a few times during the night peeing. Apparently the best way to recover from surgery in the bladder is to drink a lot and I was determined to do just that and it works.

After a great shower in the early morning – great because at the crack of sparrows the Nurse takes my readings and then removes the Cannula (thank goodness I can’t stand these things) and I can just stand in the shower and wake up and feel refreshed.

The Registrar and entourage make their rounds quite early. I am told that I can go home later and that all looks fine except that they saw a few red areas in the bladder? I let this go, this is the guy who told me about the biopsies last time and perhaps having a catheter and all that. I decide that the Registrar works on worst case scenarios (as I suppose you should), my Consultant talks from experience and hasn’t been wrong so far. She was though surprised how well I responded to my first couple of operations and she was very thorough about the grading of the Cancer because of that – I feel very safe in her care.

Breakfast arrives and with it, the Ward Sister (or whatever they call them) noticing that I am dressed and ready to go explains that they are Bed Blocking and that they will let me go about 11 a.m. I am somewhat disappointed as I could easily have gone then but the Urology ward want urology patients and not some other sort. So I sit by my bed and listen to MP3s and doze until I am called on to leave.

I call a friend and let the departure lunge people know and head off for the car park so she can pick me up. After a few minutes I realise that I have lost my bearings and am walking the wrong way so I retrace my steps and arrive outside waiting just a few moments until I am picked up and whisked off home.

I arrive home and put my feet up for the rest of the day. Drinking plenty of liquids I do indulge myself with a slightly stronger coffee than they serve at Hospital – they make coffee like my parents used to in the 60s and 70s with half milk half water – I really dislike my coffee like that.

It is too early to say whether I’ll need to go back into Hospital for an Operation. The outpatient appointment isn’t until the 1st November which leads me to believe that I will again get a further downgrading as they do tend to whisk you back in pretty quickly if you aren’t well. So working on that premise, I expect to hear that there is no more cancer, or precancerous areas in the bladder.

I am trying not to build up my hopes too much but, in reality, I am excited about the possibility of being able to have beaten this and to be in a position to be closely monitored and whilst the BCGs aren’t particularly pleasant and make most people you talk to squirm at the very thought of them, you must realise that they are giving me the opportunity to be cancer free, to live and to eventually be finished with it all.

The road ahead may be long but it just got a lot easier to live with and to navigate. The tarmac is smooth and the service stations are spaced out equally, life can fall back into a pattern and more importantly than that – I can get some control back into my life. Perhaps I may be able to draw a line under the hard part of the journey and review that and stick it in my “experience” file. A new road heading off into the west, sunshine, magnificent sunsets, new experiences and more adventures are waiting up the road for me, who knows what they will bring but, I have to be thankful that I can do any of these things as at all given the last 15 months.

Thanks for taking the journey with me so far. Are you ready for adventure? Let’s see what Scar Wars VI holds for us.

Taking a long time to repair

I was considering that I am still not right. Not as I was before the diagnosis, not as strong, not as quick and I have little stamina.

Again, it comes down to how serious it really was I suppose. I'd taken it seriously but perhaps I didn't foresee this particular result. By serious, you probably know if you have followed this that part of the strategy of fighting this was almost to ignore it, or believe it was happening to someone else. So what I am struggling to say is that I took it seriously but part of the defence mechanism I put up was not to. Still doesn't make sense does it :-) Anyway - it appears now more serious than it did then! I think perhaps I got it with that statement.

I was up a lot last night with what can only be called uncomfortable insides. My urethra aches and I'm certain, as I said yesterday, that this is like a bruise coming out or the internal bits all rearranging themselves after being straightened out by the rigid cystoscope.

The upshot is that I feel dreadfully tired today and not particularly upbeat at all. I need to go down stairs and eat something now but even after a shower I am feeling drained physically. I need to put some focus back into exercise, eating and building up my strength. Of course I know that in a month's time I'm probably going to be wiped out for another 3 weeks with the BCG treatments. Ho hum :-)

Friday, October 12, 2007

Drat, Drat & Double Drat

My appointment has come through and it isn't until 1st November - that is beyond 4 weeks.

I suppose if it is that late (and not even in the usual Hospital but elsewhere) that it isn't going to be too much of a problem and more likely a formality type appointment. The one thing that I am sure of is that I will end up with a set of three BCGs before Christmas. I think that it is OK as long as they don't start me on the course until the 12th November as I have a meeting on the 5th that I really wanted to attend. Hey Ho!

Funny - being disappointed not to go into a Hospital? I must be "losing it" somewhere :-)

At least I have a date to go in and see them and haven't had to chase this time.

Not as bad as I thought I would be

Only a little bit sore and you don't really want to know where that is. I remember this last time - it is like the bruises coming out from a wound elsewhere on your body but where this is well - how can I put it other than - the wedding tackle aches :-)

Scratching it doesn't help as it is inside - it is uncomfortable rather than painful.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Back Driving today

Well that would have been had I not spent 1 hour in a traffic jam on the M25 that is. It surprises me how much a 100 mile round trip actually took out of me today. I feel quite tired and a little sore.

I must remember to get myself an automatic car next time - having to sit in traffic in town and on the motorway really took it out of me creeping along.

Anyway, I am happy to be back driving again and getting about a bit more - I hope I am not too sore tomorrow morning.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

The plot thickens

At work that is. The exciting stage is almost upon us and the business is ready to take off, new challenges are rearing their head every day and what is interesting is the speed at which the business is ready to go at.

I'm pretty much up for this - got to take it a little easy for a few more days but other than that, I can get myself really engrossed in this as it launches. I can see it taking a lot of my time in the next few months but once the back is broken on this, we can get it moving properly.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

The Level of Concern

About me is touching. really it is. I went to a Lodge meeting tonight and just about everyone was asking after my health and asking how I was and what was going on.

It was really nice and it was touching that so many people are genuinely interested and feel strongly about my health.

What was very annoying was that one of our members, a Lollipop man (a person who assists school children to cross the road safely) was beaten up by a disgruntled driver - this in front of the school and the children he was helping across the road.

In this instance - for the trauma that person caused not only to our friend but to the children outside the school the culprit should be locked away for years. We know that isn't going to happen as the EU and the bleeding Liberals have decided that people like this are in fact having their civil liberties violated by being found guilty. The Lunatics have taken over the Asylum comes to mind.

I think they injected me with a little bit of right wing last week. Frankly I hope the guy gets 5 years or more and I don't care whether he is a family man and had his kids in the car. This just isn't acceptable behaviour in a civilised country and to beat up a 70 year old man in front of a load of kids is outrageous. Should we bring back stoning? Yes - I'd throw the first one!


So if you haven't got bladder cancer anymore but you are being treated for it (to stop it returning) have you still got bladder cancer or have you got something else?

are you a cancer survivor or are you in a precancerous state?

It is all very confusing n'est pas?

What are they treating me for?

I shall have to check this out as I believe the term remission is the proper one for something that is no longer a threat or has gone away. but has the potential to come back which unfortunately this does.

Still feeling very good

I have been feeling very good about things even before visiting Hospital - goodness me, can it really be a week since I came out of there! Where does the time go?

I was trying to examine why I was quite so upbeat given that this was before I went into Hospital and before I knew that things were looking good and yet even now I don't have the bit of paper that says all is OK and I am still upbeat.

I really can't put it down to one thing. i just woke up one morning and decided to get on with it. I'd had all the problems and gone through all the traumas and it occurred to me that just getting on with it, is what I needed to do.

This is of course different to someone telling me that to my face. The last thing anyone actually needs is some smart Alec giving you the "benefit" of their advice like "Pull yourself together" "Are you cured?" (My particular favourite is that one) "Live life one day at a time" What the hell does that mean? "There are lots of people worse off than you are" - that is true but this things is hurting me not them and so on. You really need to know how to say these sorts of things to cancer patients as we have feelings too :-)

So - it is OK for me to tell myself to buck my ideas up but not you or anyone else to tell me. Once decided on a course of "what is the worst that can happen" you do have to then be aware of trampling all over everyone around you who isn't in tune with you.

But I am pleasantly surprised that I am still very upbeat about things and still not letting anything phase me. Perhaps I have the Black Dog repellent on or something?

Internet Problems - Again

A plague on you Virgin Media!

At least I am so used to it these days that I can set a small action plan in motion to get back on line. I left a Little programme running last night that polled the servers every few seconds so it probably hounded the daylights out of them. After a bit of messing around today - I have managed to sort out and get the internet and e-mails back on.

Last night was good although I had a bit of a panic attack in the car when I got squeezed in. I had to sit up in the front. Not sure what all that was about but it was quite scary. I do get a bit of claustrophobia so perhaps that or just feeling cramped with the seat belt tight around me. Don't know. I was quite breathless when I got and and was able to move again - I got into the front seat and I was fine! Strange.

Monday, October 08, 2007

A Bad Night

My stomach area was hurting badly last night. I reckon that was because I spent most of the day on my backside doing nothing! I intend not to do that today :-)

I was up and down for about an hour before things finally settled down around about 4:30. Just a little reminder - if any were needed - that perhaps I ought to be thinking a little more about my recuperation by doing some exercise and not taking what amounted to close to bed rest.

With that said - I need to get myself up to the shops now and so I should get some exercise now.

Later today I am being driven to a meeting with some friends of mine which will be good. Looking forward to getting out and perhaps even having a little celebratory falling down juice too.

Busy Sunday

Up early to watch the Grand Prix and there was motor sport on all day so I had a day being a couch potato but I did actually do a lot - I packaged up some 150 or more envelopes with loads of flyers and agendas, I e-mailed stuff out to close to 100 other people, I wrote a positioning paper for work (2 in fact) and completed a strategy mind map.

Just a typical Sunday really - so typical that I am writing this blog at 1 a.m. on Monday morning - what do I think I am doing!!

At least I get a chance to go out with some friends later on today.

Saturday, October 06, 2007


Saturday has just been a case of grafting through all the rubbish on my desk and in my Office.

There really isn't an easy way around this I just have to keep at it until the pile of paper diminishes and more of my desktop comes into view.

Gradually the area around me is becoming clearer and I will at last be able to spread out a bit more - I was beginning to get very cramped for space.

I do need to stop now though as I have been sitting crooked and can feel my stomach muscles giving me some jip!

Easy to forget that I still need to take it easy.

So the weekend

What to do? I should be relaxing but I have a batch of things that need doing and so I will sit in my office and get that sorted and hopefully clear this backlog of things I have been reluctant to tackle.

I say reluctant but actually, I just couldn't be arsed to do it. I reckoned that the best thing to do was to be able to concentrate on some of these things later as well as I wouldn't have given them my best attention.

So now - all those things are in front of me and now need to be done so I''m setting down to do them and clear them out of the way.

I've decided that I need to relinquish more of the things I do outside of home and work and I am going to be quite active in getting rid of some of the jobs I do and events I organise as frankly, they eat into my time too much. It is about time someone else did them and that I stepped aside - in some cases I have been sorting these things out for 20 years or more. Time for a change.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Facing up to your demons

I got to reflecting today about one of the strange things about these past experiences. That was actually going through with some of these procedures and facing them. You know you have to and so you do them but I never thought I'd be able to.

I'm thinking of the sheer fright and stress prior to these things. It has eased up a lot since hypnotherapy and since I came to terms with it. I was just remembering the utter horror of the X-Ray - some may think that strange but it wasn't so much the X-Ray and the stuff they pump into you it was the laxatives that cleaned you out prior to that - I don't think I have ever felt so miserable and I hadn't long been out of Hospital either so it was a double blow.

Could I do it now? Sure if I had to. I'd probably whinge a bit but I know what the Consultant would say and so I'd do it.

The whole area around what you have to do is the key. These things are done to save you and cure you so you go through them and yet you'd rather not. Before all of this I hated hospitals and operations (who actually likes them?) and now I am resigned to having to go in regularly and to suffer whatever it takes to make me well again. I never thought I'd say that either but that is true.

Finally I never thought I could lie down while someone shoved a catheter into me (no local anaesthetic) and instill BCG into me. However, I have done and will need to continue to do that for many years to come. It is all about what you get used to and knowing that this is saving your life.

That in itself is enough to make you do things that you never thought you could do, go through stuff that fills you with horror and to tolerate far more than you would normally. You know that if you don't it can actually mean your life. I think the stakes are high enough to make you understand why you soon come to terms with things.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

I must stop and think

Before I get quite so stressed out that people are not meeting my standards and have my outlook on life.

I would repeat this a 1000 times but you know that I would cheat and just do a cut and paste!


I have sat at this damn set of computers all day now and I really should have been taking things easy!

Such is the buzz I have at the moment that I have totally forgotten that I shouldn't be working until next Tuesday at the earliest.

I am going to desert my post and go downstairs and put my feet up now like I should have done for most of the day.

No wonder people keep telling me to take it easy. the trouble is you don't realise you are over doing it until after you have over done it.

The importance of being me

Yep strange title.

I am strangely compelled to write a note about how important it is to be yourself and to not be anything other than that.

It is easy to change and to put on an act or to become embittered or aloof about having cancer or anything life threatening. Because a lot of people don't understand doesn't make them stupid or somehow of inferior intellect. You mustn't treat them like that and you need to be patient and to explain it (no matter how many times you have to do that).

It is the most important thing to those of us who suffer from such things, it "rules" and "governs" our lives and we don't understand why no one else knows that - just look at my early blogs about why no one dares mention the "C" word.

I am hoping that through the last 15 months I really was myself and I didn't shun friends or take out any anger on them or be impatient or sarcastic.

Why? Well I'd have hated to have given anyone I know a hard time. I know I upset a few people but more from being frank and honest about what was going on but I don't think I got anything other than that.

It will be good to be able to go back to answering the question "How are you?" with an honest - I'm fine.

I am feeling so much better today. I may be battered and bruised and still have trouble bending down and getting around but I feel absolutely brilliant.

Roll on the 23rd October when I can draw a line under this lot, stop the Roller Coaster and get onto one of the less wild rides for the next stage.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Recovery and the road to it

Well today was strange - I was sleeping in when I got a call from my Mum at the crack of Sparrows - "Have I woken you?" I lied and said I was awake already.

Thereafter getting up was somewhat amusing as I ached just about anywhere it is possible to ache. Having got up I sat down at the PCs and duly knocked out a few hours of e-mails and bits and then I had to sort out a PC problem for a friend. I felt that I should have a sit down which I did after lunch and then sat and watched some DVDs purchased for just this eventuality. Half way through Lawrence of Arabia, I had a call from my friend who sounded very upbeat - which pleased me as he sounded down in the dumps last week.

We chatted about lots of things and a lot about my recent operation and the hopeful results. We both have our problems with the Black Dog turning up every now and then but, as I reported last week, I am feeling very good about myself, my job, my condition and just about everything else at the moment. How long can that last?

Well to answer my own question, at least three weeks and I hope longer than that.

I am now really getting to grips with my job and things that I set in motion two or three months ago are coming to fruition. Some of the long term plans I made are also working out well.

I just hope that I am not like the Ensign you used to see on Star Trek - the one you hadn't seen before - sent on an away mission and stunned by aliens :-)

I am 95% certain that my consultant's words were meant to say - clear - let's go to the next stage. That will be something to hear. Not sure how I'll react to it though. Considering that the last lot was two small precancerous areas that were said to be suspicious and that this time the areas looked pink but are probably a reaction to the BCG are - I am sure - the right sort of words without being completely committal before the lab results.

This isn't the end of the road it just means there is a new fork in it and the way gets easier and a little more pleasant. Maintenance therapy is there to now "prevent" the cancer returning not to remove it. It may seem a strange slant on things but for the present, I don't have cancer. These results should re-enforce that prognosis. Maintenance would then kick in which will last many years but I'll be monitored and receive ongoing treatment which will eventually lead to being clear for a long enough period to know that it wont come back.

I now have to go and do my part of the deal and get myself back into shape. I probably wont get started until next week when I am feeling a little less sore but I must get back to a proper regime of exercise, diet and life style to maintain a healthy body and to ensure that I get fit again ready for the next lot of BCG treatment which could start as early as November (about the same time as last year!).

Anyway - I am very upbeat and I must go and get some rest. I am prone to overdoing things when I should be recuperating.

So How Was It?

Bed shortage - nothing new there but eventually after 3 hours waiting I was taken straight to surgery. That was actually quite stressful as I hadn't been able to relax and do my breathing and repeat my hypnotheapy words to myself and get myself ready. So Blood Pressure was up, Pulse was racing and I did say why I thought that it was so. After a short while it all came back to on the high side of normal.

In the preparation room I was pleasantly surprised to be able to award 10 out of 10 to the Anaesthetist. we made a deal that I'd provide a juicy vein and that they would find a sharp cannula. They were very good - I don't have a larger bruise (unlike the rest of my body which feels like one big bruise). We also had an arrangement that for my Operation (yes they call it an Operation not a procedure) I'd be whisked off to Hawaii in less than 7 seconds.

I did feel very "heady" this time when I came to and I was back on the ward and felt quite well after that.

No blood (a few bits) when urinating was a marked improvement and I was disappointed that I had to stay overnight.

A three week wait now until the results are known. That is going to be difficult as I'd like to start shouting about it now but - if it isn't in writing then it isn't confirmed. Be good if it was though wouldn't it? Brilliant

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

And so to bed - thanks Sam

Yes off to bed now.

Had an interesting afternoon snoozing in front of the telly and watching - or rather not - some DVDs I wanted to get around to watching which I will have to watch as I dozed off during most of them. I've been taking some Nurofen and Paracetamol and some throat tablets.

They seem to have done quite a number on me and I ache just about everywhere. My legs really hurt - perhaps they were put in stirrups and my back, neck and arms hurt but they are nothing to what my lower abdomen is feeling. That does feel like they have stirred me around a lot.

However, given the suggested good news, I think I will take the pain as it looks like there may be some gain to be had here.

Ever hopeful I am off to bed and hope that I feel a lot better in the morning. These General Anaesthetics really do take it out on you as well and I am coughing too - which is normal. The trouble is coughing hurts my already sore throat and hurts my chest.

Good to be back home though.

Oh yes - and I won an album I have been after for ages on eBay - cool.

Back Home

Shaken and Stirred.

Will post more later as I NEED sleep. All appears to have gone very well. They could see noting in there except for a pink patch or if you listen to the registrar some red spots! I'll take the Pink Patch from the Consultant at the moment.

They think that it is reaction to the BCG not anything else.

I'll know in three weeks time.

On that rather splendid news - I shall take my leave of you and totter back downstairs for a coffee and a snooze in my chair.

Monday, October 01, 2007

2 hours to go

And the countdown is well and truly on. I had a good night's sleep and got up at 6 for a light breakfast and a coffee. I packed down two large glasses of water and I am allowed to drink (although I will only sip) water up until the time I go in.

I'm surprised that I am quite as calm about this as I am. Sure, there is a little apprehension, I don't know anyone who actually enjoys the experience after all.

I managed to sleep after breakfast - had the strangest dream about the cruise we had been on (or part of it). I've woken, had a shower and I'm about to upload some MP3s to my player to take in with me. Going through my head is the Antony & the Johnsons track that was playing just before the first operation - not the brightest of tracks but one that is now connected to the whole experience.

So 15 months (well it will be tomorrow) since discovering this I'll be having my 4th General Anaesthetic and 3rd set of biopsies. So far (touches wood) each has shown an improvement in fortune and so I am quietly confident that this will continue that trend and things will get better.

I am also convinced that this will be a change in emphasis this time and that I can get back to running my life and not having it run for me. Sure there will be deadlines and milestones for this as treatments and peek & Poke sessions will be needed and followed.

I am going to get this over and done with now and I feel better than I did last week going for pre-assessment. The back of my wrist is beginning to twinge a bit as I know the Cannula is going in there but other than that and I can feel some anxiety, I'm OK - I know the drill now, I know how it works, what is expected of me and what will happen (so there is no need to worry about what they are going to do). I know to ask for my water when I wake and to take it easy so as not to pass out like the first time :-)

Curiously I can feel the slight churn in my stomach but that will pass and now it is 1 1/2 hours before I go in.

Fingers crossed that they find nothing this time. If that is so, then we can crack open the "Internet champagne" - if not - it may take some getting used to, but I'll have to re-plan accordingly.