Friday, May 31, 2013

Another Day Up In Town

It is amazing how many people think about me for projects they are working on but nothing comes of them.  Two in the past two days and both "may" come off.  Of course the problem is with these things that invariably they don't actually materialise and I get involved only to find that the work goes away or just doesn't appear at all.

Both these jobs sound great, right up my street but I'm uncertain whether I want to get involved anyway as I've only just got the other business under way - although it will take some months I believe to be ready to trade.  

I'm back up to London for the second day in a row - I certainly hope I'm not catching the 00:56 train back again like I did last night.  Goodness knows where all the time went last night we were having a good old natter as I guess we hadn't met for 10 years or more!  I certainly don't want to drink as much as I did as well - goodness knows I like Red Wine but could have done without bottle three appearing at dinner....  No after effects thank goodness although goodness knows I should at least have had a sore head but somehow I don't.  Tonight it should be a little less boozy.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Tragic news from a fellow BC survivor

Steve Kelley is a fellow Bladder Cancer survivor and blogger and we are bonded together through our diagnosis and experiences and the Internet through our blogs.  We share messages of support and advice and we are good friends that have never actually spoken on a phone or met in real life.  I pop into see his site regularly but today was the tragic news that his parents had perished in a car crash on the 28th May. 

These are Steve's words:


My parents both perished in a single-vehicle automobile crash this evening. They were in relatively good health for a couple near 80 years old. The entire family is in shock. It will be some time before the blog is updated again."

I hope you will join with me in offering prayers and thoughts for Steve, his wife and their wider family as words completely fail me at the moment.  I remember how I felt when I lost my dad but I had almost a year to prepare for that and so I really cannot imagine how this feels.  I am comforted by the fact that Steve's church and faith are strong and I am certain they will help them come to terms with and deal with this terrible tragedy.  

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Exercise - Two Four Letter Words Joined Together :-)

No one actually likes exercise do they?  I certainly don't but I got back onto the Cross Trainer today and did a 20 minute workout.  Interestingly it didn't feel too bad I guess because I'm probably lighter than I've been for years.  I actually fit back into stuff from when I was first diagnosed - well almost - a few pairs of trousers are a little tighter than I remember them but at least the jackets and shirts now fit and half of my pairs of trousers.  

I now need to work in a routine of at least 3 exercise drills a week and also I will aim to get my vibration plate workout in as well giving me aerobic exercise on the Cross Trainer and Anaerobic on the plate.  

I did my blood sugars from yesterday and they are all pretty good in and around 5.1 or 5.2 before and after meals (2 hours after) and I'm happy with that sort of level.  I'd be happier with 4 or so but they aren't as frequently recorded.  It is surprising how quickly you get used to stabbing your finger and taking readings.

A Quick Replanning Exercise

With the 3 months freelance working going away I am back to the drawing board this morning.   I need to advance my efforts by three months which I was hoping to use as thinking, planning and building time.  Oh well, these things happen.  It was a nuisance though.  

I was planning to start in two weeks once I've got all that is currently on my plate out of the way.  I think that I'll make that date the beginning of my new direction and see where I go from there.  What I can start to do is clear the decks and get ready to organise my office.  I can get rid of lots of old junk and stuff I no longer need.  

In some ways I'm lucky having undertaken some research last year - I can reuse that.  I've now purchased the company name and I already have the web sites and so just need to build the business plan an hone it to allow me to launch the business and hopefully have it up and running by around September or October.  A steep ask but I think it is doable.  

I can also aim to build the changes to my routine and build exercise into that too.  

Turn Again

My goodness - it's gone 2 in the morning and I've just got back from a really great evening.  Just seen for the 2nd time the Zombies and for the 5th or 6th time Colin Bluntstone.  All a bit last minute and I'd already been for a "few wines" at lunchtime.

It was a great evening and even better we then went on for some more drinks and had a great time ranting on about the bands of the 70s and 80s.  

The downside and bummer is that the potential contract I had for 3 months has subsided into nothingness :-(  Not a good end to a great evening.  

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Interesting Comment

I dropped my mum off and she got home safely after a good weekend.  She seemed to have enjoyed herself and so that's good.  I got a call from my business partner and we went to the local pub for a few drinks and to have a spot of lunch.  I was able to ask for a salad and that was great - very enjoyable.  Chef asked if I was on a diet as he did reckon I'd lost a lot of weight.  I then realised that I'd actually lost close to 3 stone so far since January which is pretty good.  I've still got about that to go I think to be really around the weight I'd like.  Nice of him to notice and also nice of him to fix me a salad for my lunch.

Over the weekend I finally got to fit back into my posh shirts and Mrs. F. has brought out some old clothes that I might now be able to fit into!  Who knows :-)  

My business partner was telling me his story of the job he started not too long ago and the idiot he had to work for who it appears lied to him about having a full time role.  It is shocking that these sorts of people hold office in big companies.  So my mate is now out of contract - although I smell that there is more to come from my understanding of the contract and the agreements that were made.  He was feeling that something was wrong from day one.  Now he is fully aware that there is.  Good thing that he's pretty much tuned in to what was happening from early on.  Frankly I'd have smashed ten bells of sh1t out of the guy :-)  But then that's me I have a very low tolerance level for dickheads.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Preparing for normality

I have to say that the last 7 years have been incredibly up and down and I've managed to hit the highs and lows emotionally and it doesn't help when there is an inherent lack of stability in your life and in addition, it isn't the only thing that's destabilizing things.  Cancer is one huge iceberg to hit and the blow it delivers to your self-confidence is amazing.  

I sat down and watched the HBO series 'Pacific' which was a present (of my request) for Christmas - it is equally as harrowing as Band of Brothers and Saving Private Ryan (all made by the same people).  The last episode features one of the "heroes" returned from the war who just wasn't ready to return to civilian life.  These men had been through an unimaginable hell only glimpsed at in the film and you can only begin to start to appreciate the Post Traumatic Stress they were going through.  In one breath I cannot compare myself to them but in another perhaps I can for the stress of having Cancer does wear you down emotionally and physically.  It isn't until after the event, when you rest, when your breathing comes back to normal, when the irrational fears subside and when you can apply some cold logic to your situation and spend quiet time that the enormity of it all hits you.

The Tsunami of depression or perhaps it may be a complete lack of energy and a leaning to be introverted and silent and uncommunicative.  It can be the opposite making up for things by exploding into extrovert behaviour for the benefit of your friends and family over compensating for how crap you actually feel by doing the opposite.  All of these and many, many more are part of the journey and not everyone will be the same.  Not everyone will "think" about it or even 
consider it.  Not everyone will look to fight and change their lives and some will succumb and lay over and die.

For something like 5 years now I've been clear of Cancer and apart from these two false positives life's been sort of OK with working at the Charity and then on our Venture (now sadly closed through lack of imaginative funding).  Now I've got to work out where to go and what to do and like the soldier, I've spent some time just not wanting to do anything at all.  I can't seem to get my head around returning to civilian life and drudgery and wage slave status as it all seems somewhat pointless having come through a life changing event I wanted to do something worthwhile.  In many ways I could still be at the Charity and settled in a 9-5 but that isn't me.  

Once this weekend is out of the way and I have something I must sort out in early June then I need to prepare to be normal again - it's a big step though and the last thing I am any more is normal.  

Stand By - Mum's Coming Over

This time last year I was up to see my dad on and off and of course, it was the end of the business too and all very distressing.  We went to the Hotel for the meal and I think I may have gone off just after that.  It is coming up a year in July when Dad passed away and I'm really very pleased that mum has got on with things and she is getting out and about and tomorrow she comes down to stay with us for a few days and will come with me to the dinner at the Spa Hotel.  Needless to say, it will be her first experience of anything like this and I've been in Freemasonry for 30 years.  My dad never travelled well and wasn't a great socialiser and didn't particularly enjoy dressing for dinner or any of that fuss.

It will be nice to have mum for a few days and we have the Bank Holiday too so it will make a nice weekend which is just long enough (for both of us).  I pick her up tomorrow from the Ebbslfeet International Station - it is great as she can get off at Kings Cross and walk to the next station and get on a train that takes a less time than it does for me to drive there from London. Amazing High Speed 1 Javelin Trains.

I may write less with her around as her room is opposite my office :-)  I'm feeling a little sore today around my middle - I guess internal bruising and readjustments going on.  At least it isn't painful more uncomfortable I guess.  I printed off the first week's blood glucose tests and will probably do a few more over the coming days.  They appear to be in the right order.  My Blood pressure is a different matter altogether as it isn't as low as it has been but it still isn't bad.  It compares to last year's readings and things haven't got worse but I was expecting a lowering with this diet I'm on.  Perhaps I just need to bring in some more exercise.  If I get this job I'll certainly be able to do plenty of exercise in walking to and from the stations and the work and home locations - around 3 to 4 miles a day I think.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Blood Testing

6 or more years ago you'd have found me not ever wanting to give up my blood willingly or without a fight :-)  These days I take measurements myself and don't think much of it at all.

I'm taking a series of measurements so that I can "discuss" with my GP whether or not they'd like to get around to telling me something that the Hospital know and that I've only just found out through them at my last pre-assessment.  That is that they wrote to the Hospital very early on in my treatment so around about 6 or 7 years ago telling the Hospital that I was a Type 2 diabetic controlled by diet.  In many ways this came as a shock because all they told me to do was to lay off the very high amounts of fruit I was consuming at the time.  I'd regularly have Grapefruit, Oranges, Apples, Grapes, Apricots and Pears daily and the hit it was giving me would give my body problems.  I hadn't been eating that way for long but had been told to eat healthily and up my fruit and vegetable intake.  Knowing what I know now, how wrong was that?!

So after I was told not to eat excessive fruit or I "MIGHT" end up Diabetic I duly went home and changed my diet accordingly.  Of course, it still wasn't anything like I am on these days but even so it was a major shift.  Quite what made my GP write to the Hospital and not tell me is beyond me.  I also know that I'm not in denial or some other process blanking this out because Mrs. F. came along with me that day and we spoke to the Doctor together. In fact I do miss him as he was very nice and seemed to be genuinely concerned about how we were coping mentally as well as physically but I digress. 

However, the dangerous thing here is that for a further 5 or 6 years I've happily gone on in the belief that I had a scrape with being Diabetic based on some unhealthy healthy eating kick and yet if I was truly Diabetic then I should have been being careful with what I ate for all that time.

So far, the measurements I have taken all bear out that my blood glucose is in the normal range and whilst I've had one marginal reading it was the morning after cheat day where I had two meals and plenty of drink during the day all normally off my 6 days a week diet.  I haven't done every meal - that's complete overkill but I do switch it around to say do breakfast and evening meal or fasting overnight and lunchtime.  The process to get a drop of blood is pretty straightforward and the machine is simple to use.  I log everything down on a spreadsheet and let it go from there.

I'm still monitoring my Urine pH levels and have been fascinated with seeing the trace blood count in that.  There is no Glucose whatsoever which is good.  My blood pressure isn't exactly where I want it but it is within tolerance.  I'd like it to be lower and perhaps when I get a bit more active next week it will be.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Bit Of A Wordy Last Post

I hadn't intended it to be quite as long a tome as that :-)  I got a bit carried away with all the stuff going around in my head.  

Of course what "does my head in" as they say colloquially here is that on the two occasions when I've had a false positive I've actually reacted to each by assuming that I did have a recurrence and it's been quite destabilising for me on both episodes.  I remember stepping up my Flax Seed Oil and Cottage Cheese regime from once or twice a week to every day.  I noticed that I looked seriously at my current diet to see whether I'd do something stupid in that department and on this most recent repeat decided that Bacon was the bad guy although, of course, if there is no recurrence, then that's a conclusion that I shouldn't have made.  Mind you, I did review the evidence and have made it sufficiently worrying so that I don't have it regularly any more.  I will certainly just have it occasionally and sparingly there are plenty of other things to eat.  Although let's face it the taste of Bacon is great. 

I've had a few flecks of the biopsy scabs fire out today so expect a few more tomorrow and hopefully that will be the end of it.  I'd forgotten how long it takes for everything to "rearrange" itself after the operation, it still feels tender and slightly uncomfortable.  Nevertheless, this is still looked on with the Silver Lining that I'm 99% certain that there was no cancer there.  The thing that threw me this time was definitely the drawing of a tumour on the bladder diagram they use here.  It might be more useful if they'd use a TV and take a photo you'd have thought?  Perhaps a conversation I can have with my Consultant?

My mum is arriving on Thursday for the long weekend and she is coming to my final fling as Master of my Lodge when we will be hosting a lunch for around 120 or more people at the Spa Hotel in Tunbridge Wells.  It is a lovely venue and I am looking forward to it greatly as we will have the girls with us as well as some very good friends.  I think I might end up having a bit of a wobbly cheat day on Sunday and perhaps on the Saturday - it depends who is home and what we end up doing.

Scientific Process

Richard Feynman  was an American theoretical physicist known for his work in the path integral formulation of quantum mechanics.  I recall listening to him some years ago, he is no longer with us unfortunately.  

Here is the clip of what I remember:

"In general we look for a new law by the following process. First we guess it. Then we compute the consequences of the guess to see what would be implied if this law that we guessed is right. Then we compare the result of the computation to nature, with experiment or experience; compare it directly with observation, to see if it works.
It’s that simple statement that is the key to science. It does not make any difference how beautiful your guess is. It does not make any difference how smart you are, who made the guess, or what his name is. If it disagrees with experiment it is wrong."

I kind of wonder about today's science and these stories that come about.  There seems to be a leaning towards consensus science and a move away from being challenged and your theory torn apart by your peers.  Surely good science can stand up to peer review, to experimentation and surely good science actually holds water, experiments can be repeatable.  Today you see modelling using computers and their results taken as Gospel and defended with religious zealotry as if they are real results.  You only have to look at the behaviour of "climate scientists" to see how they take any criticism of their work and resort to a public outburst and call people's authority to doubt and bring free speech and the scientific process (see above) into question.  

I read something the other day that some Rabbits had been fed meat and they had developed cancer and that this result was posted (I haven't been able to find it again) and published.  Now I'm no scientist but aren't Rabbits Herbivores and if you feed them things they aren't designed to eat or digest well it sure to have a bad affect on them.  Is this good science?  I suppose we needed to know that but really does it have any bearing on meat consumption in humans?  I think not but it was being bandied about as another reasons we should all become vegetarians which, is a lifestyle choice and not what our bodies are designed to be.  I've no problem with anyone deciding to do this but we are Omnivores and need vegetables and meat in our diet - that's what we are designed to eat and it sort of makes sense to put the right things into our bodies.  I could do the petrol and oil and water in a car analogy I suppose but hopefully you get the picture.  

Then there are other things out there and it all seems to me to be "Stating the Bleeding Obvious" then there are few holistics studies and then there are the statistical anomalies.  Surely if you do an experiment on 6 people in 3 months it doesn't point to long term trends and isn't actually meaningful in the overall scheme of things.  Stuff just doesn't appear to be thought through these days.  

Trying to find data that isn't statistically played with and also trying to find the good information from the bad take a lot of time.  As they said in the X-Files "The Truth is out there".  It probably is, it just takes ages to find it and then you need to read through a number of times to make sure that you've read what you thought you read and that the science holds together.

The food debate goes on and so much that I read is at variance.  One day something is good for you the next day it is bad.  I like the idea of looking back to see what we ate years ago and to try and replicate that now.  Then you'll see someone stating that people didn't live that long back in history and again why was that?  Surely our bodies are designed for more than just a couple of decades usage.  I thought it interesting to read that major problems such as heart disease and diabetes, tooth decay and obesity were unheard of hundreds of years ago.  It was only when we started to develop a taste for sugars and complex carbohydrates that things appear to have started to go wrong with our bodies. 

With so much obesity, diabetes, heart disease and cancer around these days one has to wonder is it to do with our lifestyle, our food or is it something else.  I've mentioned Occam's Razor before and it helps to choose some of the interpretations include:

"If you have two theories that both explain the observed facts, then you should use the simplest until more evidence comes along"

"The simplest explanation for some phenomenon is more likely to be accurate than more complicated explanations."

"If you have two equally likely solutions to a problem, choose the simplest."

"The explanation requiring the fewest assumptions is most likely to be correct."

So what do I think it is likely to be?  It has to be to do with diet and lifestyle.  Diet more than anything appears to me to hold the key to this.  We have been led to believe that a diet that some call "balanced" is right for us.  I see it like feeding meat to Rabbits we are eating a lot of the wrong things (possibly as we believe it to be for the right reasons) and we perceive these things to be healthy for us.   Bread, Potatoes, Pasta and Rice.  Our mothers knew that these made us put on weight.  They fatten up livestock on this sort of stuff :-)  We all know that sugar is bad for us but we consume huge quantities unknowingly as it is trapped in most of our food in one form or the other (I'm not going to play Carbohydrates and Sugar as the same at the moment).  Fruit which is sold as incredibly good for us is just loaded with Fructose and there are few fruits that you can consider your friend.  Man has never had so much fruit available nor had it out of season.  Additionally this fruit has been so bred by the growers to contain more sugar and less fibre so that a sugar dependent public will regularly buy them.

Think back to the days when fruit and vegetables were in season.  You only got apples in autumn and vegetables were seasonal.  You could get some things year round but very few.  Some days you went hungry and that's when your mum would feed you a bit of bread and dripping or you'd have Jam sandwiches.  You had sugar as a treat not as a staple.  Most of the stuff we ate was meat and two veg but only once a day.  These days you can easily get three cooked full meals a day and that's what they call a balanced diet and eating regularly!  Really?  Surely we aren't designed to eat three times (or more) a day?  Nor at each meal to eat a balanced diet, we must have eaten what we gathered or hunted for?  We didn't have the benefit of Sodas and fruit juices, exotic fruit available from the supermarket around the corner.   Today's society is one of plenty and high availability - I'm old enough to remember shortages of staple food in the 1970s and so everywhere you look you can find food.  Fast food, out of season food and stuff from just about anywhere and everywhere.  Processed foods are perhaps the major concern.  I've found that things you wouldn't expect have High Fructose Corn Syrup HFCS or perhaps sugar on its own or wheat flour and other undesirable things which "hook" us and make us wanting more.  I could hardly believe that mustard and Worcestershire Sauce contained sugar as do most pickles and some with HFCS and that's here in the UK.

I started off by looking at scientific process and have strayed a bit off subject but what I've been trying to look at is the phenomenon of "Settled Science"  we are told to have carbohydrates and fruit as an integral foundation of our diet.  Meat and Fat are demonised and yet these are the very things it appears we are designed to eat as the foundation of our diet, our carbohydrates coming from vegetables and very few fruits (certainly not fruits as we know them today).  Seeds and berries were seasonal and not available every day to us.  There is plenty of evidence that the way we eat today is leading to the modern diseases such as diabetes and obesity and heart disease and cancers.  There are whole industries set up to feed our bodies things that aren't naturally good for us and there are other industries whose job it is to provide remedies for those of us affected by these diseases. 

Surely addressing the root cause of these would be the way to do.  If you could look to diet and change it sufficiently to bring down the instances of these diseases that would be a good thing for humanity right?  Perhaps it is not a good thing for the businesses who may deliver the problem in the first place and those who treat (but don't sure) the symptoms......

Just saying :-) 

Cancer & Diet

Oh dear....  Here is a link to a Podcast from Radio 4 (thanks Gary H).  It is about 13.5Mb and is 28 minutes long.  Some of this is interesting but some I find a bit concerning - especially this fallacy of a balanced diet.  I think that some of the stuff in the Podcast still isn't actually right as I tend to believe that we (as a species) haven't evolved to be able to eat fruit that isn't seasonal - you can get bananas all year round as you can many fruits.  

Grains are also available year round but have only been for a small fraction of our time on earth.  Processed carbohydrates and man made foods have also only been around for a very short time - perhaps 70 years or so.  Man has been on the earth for, it is thought, around 2,500,000 years and evolved through eating a high protein base diet which helped build large brains and so bring about intelligence and as time went on language and great motor skills.  Man is a hunter gatherer and existed on his ability to hunt game and live off the land.  The better he was the more he ate but you can imagine that often man would go hungry and that there would be famine and feast times.  Crops of berries and fruits and grains and vegetables would only be available in season and these would be a supplement to not part of the day to day diet.  

The 5.2 diet is gaining traction as it tries to replicate something that is somewhere akin to the natural diet of man.  My 4HB diet is also similar in some ways too emphasising the use of proteins and vegetables in the diet but removing all man made processed and non natural foods as possible.  

As I've often said my Doctors are great at treating the cancer and getting rid of it.  They only ever told me to "eat healthily" and then I had to ask what I could do.  They treat the disease and no one considers where diet has any bearing.  In fact, it is only my own desire to never want to get cancer again and to do everything in my power to make myself better and to keep myself well.  

The more I investigate the more I firmly believe that our modern lifestyle and diet are major contributory factors towards modern diseases such as Diabetes, Cancers and Obesity are somehow linked to the availability of food to us these days, the production of processed foods and the prevalent inclusion of carbohydrates in our diet.  Now - I'm no doctor or specialist I can only put my beliefs down to the results of my investigations and added some logic to those arguments tabled.  

I find that people still thinking that bread and cereal, pasta and potatoes can be called healthy is somewhat concerning.  This stuff is all sold as healthy.  Have a read of the label and suddenly it doesn't look that good.  You have to buy into the marketing that eating processed carbohydrates can be anything other than damaging in the long term.  

Much of my early efforts to eat healthily led to me firmly believing that carbohydrates and fruits were the way to go after all they are the base of the food triangle they show and our Government peddle on the TV etc.  What happened was that I overdid the fruit and the carbohydrates and pushed myself to pre-diabetic blood-glucose levels and was warned off these.  The annoying thing is that this is standard knowledge and balanced diets show a heavy leaning towards fruit, cereals and grains and vegetables (not all good ones) and meat and the like are very low down the order.  What is wrong here?

I'm not going to put all the answers over in one blog post but I do think that the way that we can now have plentiful food available to us does make us overeat - we feel hungry we just go to the cupboard or to the shop and we aren't hungry anymore.  Before we'd have to wait until we caught or found something and perhaps sometimes we would gorge ourselves on it.  The true use of insulin and fat storage can then be seen when you can't use all the food you have, you can store a bit and use it when times were a little harder.  We live in the land of Eden where we have a never ending supply of food but really is that a good thing?  More musings later.  Enjoy the podcast although some parts didn't ring true of me but I would like to see more work and advice available.

I also need to think through my views on some food stuffs - like Bacon and processed meats again - especially as I vilified them because I thought my recurrence (which wasn't) may have been through eating them.   Another post on that once I've thought it through.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

What a Difference a Week Makes

Yes - this time last week I thought I had Bladder Cancer back and now I'm pretty sure that I don't have it.  Life looks a lot different right now.  Additionally I'm pretty certain that my blood glucose readings are in pretty good shape and that apart from a slight hit following cheat day, I'm in the realms of "normal".  I've got to do some more tests of course and over a long period of time.  My Blood Pressure is pretty good and at a constant of around 130 over 90 which is good for me but I will try and get that down once I can exercise which I reckon is about a week away.

I've now got a plan(s) to go forward and I may have a short term contract to work up in London for 3 months doing some illustration work with a friend of mine.  It pays reasonable money and the hours mean that I won't be travelling in rush hour.  I'm waiting to hear back on this whether I can start in early June mainly as I've got my mum down with us this week and I need a few days to work on other things then I can commit to a full time run at it.

Longer term, and I do hope I can look longer term, I've got the three or four business streams to have a go at.  In many ways I think that it will take me awhile to build one of them and so I've now got to build my business plans and work out how I can achieve this.  It's daunting and exciting at the same time.  

I'm still a little tender especially when urinating - it certainly still gives a slight sting.  I've noted that I've still got trace blood results from the wounds so perhaps the stinging is coming from that?  There is also this strange feeling which I'm sure is just my insides putting themselves back into their normal position!  I'd forgotten that it takes this long to recover.  I had a good weekend but being out Friday night and all day Saturday sure knocked me about and I fell asleep in my chair overnight and woke at dawn as the sun was coming up - so then actually went to bed!  

Friday, May 17, 2013

Big Meal - Low Impact

It was a big meal and also major temptation to fall of my diet but I try really hard to make certain that I try and keep as near as possible to the 4HB and Protein Power and Atkins type diet as possible.  I had more than 2 glasses of Wine and as I say to the servers, there is only one size of wine glass and it isn't medium or small!!! :-) 

The meal had some problems in it.  I disposed of my roll and butter but had the French Onion Soup knowing it probably contained some sugar content and I gave away the french bread and cheese to a friend.  So I just had the soup.  The main course was a Pork Chop rubbed with mustard and (unfortunately) brown sugar.  I didn't have any gravy and so sort of managed to live within limits   On top of that I refused the potatoes and went for the carrots and green beans and had extra portions as there were plenty of them!

The sweet was a Trifle which I took and then passed on to my friend too.  He's diabatic - go figure...  So then there was Cheese and biscuits, celery and grapes.  I just had some cheese and celery and then a coffee.  Just over 2 hours later my Blood Glucose reading is 4.8 mmol/L which isn't bad at all considering this may have been slightly more than I would have expected to have.

I'm pleased that my readings appear to be normal but I hope after some exercise I might get these down to an even lower level.  So far I don't see me being anything other than a pre-diabetic at worst but I'm sure the "professionals" will have their say on it.  

Tomorrow is cheat day and I have two Lodge meetings and can drink what I like.  I don't think that my Blood Glucose will be anything other than off the scale and I'm not at home anyway so I will probably just forget tomorrow and go on to Sunday to continue.  Under the 4HB I get to blow my system up once a week and taking tests isn't going to help.

On a completely different tack.  I was looking at a website and came across a company that I used to work with when I was in my early 20s.  They were jewellry suppliers and I found they'd moved from London to locally.  I remembered the friend I had - Lawrence - at the time.  Tonight, I'm in the bar and I spied this chap and he had exactly the same eyes and look as the guy I'd known all those years ago.  I went over and asked him and indeed it was him.  We had a brief chat and it looks like he knows someone I know and so we will get together and catch up when we next meet.  How weird is that?   

New Health Blueprint

I'm pretty impressed with my blood glucose readings - they are all in limit of a 'normal person' and scrape around the bottom of the Type 2 area.  I don't have any of the signs of Type 2 Diabetes in my day to day activities.  The one thing that I don't do at the moment is to exercise regularly - I do it in uncontrolled fits and starts.  Today for example I'll walk about 2 and a half miles to the Lodge meeting and I can do that in about 40 or 45 minutes - it will be good for me but I don't do that every day.  I have my cross trainer which I used to do 8kM a day on at one time and I've got my vibration plate for my anaerobic exercises.  I use that about once a week.  I've read a lot now on Type 2 and it appears that I really should be putting in some time exercising and so once I've got past the yukky bit of the operation and left it a few days beyond I can get back to some exercising.  This should, I hope, trigger off some more changes in my diet and bring my weight down and as a consequence it should help my blood pressure and blood glucose too.

Like all these things, you need to get organised and I'm just starting to look at doing that.  My mum comes down to visit us in a week and then we have the Bank Holiday and so I think perhaps straight after that is the time to get organised and start to do something.

I'm really pleased with the progress on my diet and being below 16 stone is great and I'm hoping to keep going down and losing a lot more.  I feel very good at the moment and apart from being a little sore and a little stinging still I think I'm recovering well from the mauling I took on Monday.

I'm almost settled on my food regime, still searching for various things to do with the Flax Seed Oil and Cottage Cheese mixture as it is OK with Tuna but somehow I really do miss having it with breakfast cereal and also with fruit and nuts.  Nuts are probably OK but not in the sort of quantity to go with the FOCC mixture even though I'm making less of it.  I found a few more sites that have recipes and I'll trawl my way through those.  I like one idea of grinding flax seeds and adding them to a salad and if we ever get a summer and I have more salads I'll do that.  At the moment it feels so cold outside you'd be forgiven for thinking it was January not May. 

It All Looks Different Now

I'm pretty certain that you would get the fact that this time last week I thought I had Cancer again and now I'm pretty certain that I don't.  Suddenly the horizon isn't as near and I can think to plan further into the future.  

My blood glucose levels are all within tolerance especially my fasting level.  Additionally my Blood Pressure is OK (but not great) but it is in the right area.  Urine tests also appear to be OK although I've still got some trace blood from the 4 wounds in my bladder.  Of course every time you urinate the bladder which is a muscle collapses in on itself and so it must be quite difficult to heal.  I think it will be sometime next week when you get to the yucky bit when you pass the scabs which fall off - at least they are easily passed :-)  Mind you it can take you by surprise sometimes.

I'm just in a much better place and we will just have to see how things pan out.  There's a local job going that I've asked for more details and I was offered a small contract on a self employed basis which is for 3 months so that's a possibility too.

I'm off out tonight and all day tomorrow!  Busy but just need to remember not to "over do" it.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Invisible Nasty Stuff In My Food

Sugar that is in all it's forms and hidden carbohydrates and grains and all sorts of nonsense in my food.  I found Fructose in my Pickled Onions, Sugar in Pickled Dills, Sugar and Wheat Flour in Mustard, sugar in Worcestershire Sauce and the list goes on and on.  Sugar is absolutely everywhere and in so many different forms.  Fructose must be the criminal of them all, a naturally occurring sugar but my goodness what it does to your body....

Then all those carbohydrates that everyone tells you are so good for you too.  It's been a bit of an epiphany in some ways and as I said some years ago, having cancer has a silver lining in that it made me begin to take a bit more control of my diet and my lifestyle.  

My goodness though, I thought to myself this morning, I've been through the mill on this journey.  I was feeling particularly beaten up and sorry for myself this morning as only a bruised wrist and sore bladder area and still the faint reminder of pissing razor blades can make you reflect on what you've just been through.  Not once but now 11 times!  Sure other people have worse things and far blacker prognoses than I (and that's good to remind you to give due proportion to your own situation) but it's me feeling like this and whilst I have general empathy for others it is me who is experiencing this.  

When you start to dig into your lifestyle and the "advice" you are given and then scratch away a bit more you start to find out loads of things.  Without going into too much detail it has been interesting to read that there were hardly any diabetics, cancers or heart problems a few centuries ago.  Sure people died of some diseases and nasty things which we've now cured but in general it is only recently that diabetes and heart disease have been with us and it appears that since the "balanced diet" appeared in the 1960s there has been a rising number of cases of these diseases.  There are plenty of books out there about the Paleo diet and Atkins and others like Protein Power and The Insulin Factor and works by Tim Ferriss and Gary Taubes are also worth looking up.  The popular Mercola website also has lots of information on it - although it can be a bit "Daily Mail" in its delivery of the news....  Nearly all of them highlight the link between carbohydrates (in all their forms) or sugars if you like that screw with your body and cause insulin to work against you rather than for you.  

If you get a moment when you look at a packet of food or jar or bottle have a look at the ingredients - it will surprise you what is in it.  Mustard for example had sugar and wheat flour in it.  I have now bought ground mustard powder and make my own as needed.   A jar of pickles generally has for example Onions, Vinegar, Fructose, Salt and some other stuff.  We try and make our own now as it is difficult to find any that don't have sugar / fructose in them.  How on earth diabetics can keep track and control over this is beyond me.  

Finally in this rant, the consensus is that the food pyramid has carbohydrates at the base and vegetables and fruit thereafter then diary and then meats and fish above that.  Surely something is wrong here - carbohydrates are cheap and plentiful but will kick the daylights out of your body and make you fat (if you are so inclined that way) and then fruit which our ancestors only had limited supplies of and only in season and certainly they didn't have the highly modified fruits of today which are high in sugars and low in fibre.   The whole thing is arse about face and this supply of cheap and plentiful carbs and fruit and processed food which hasn't been with us that long is leading to a major problem with the population including diabetes, heart disease and cancers.  It's a bit of a "Go Figure" thing.  

I know that since I've been on a low carbohydrate, low insulin (GI), high protein diet my weight has fallen away, and generally my health is better than it has been for some time.  I feel quite fit and healthy and problems I used to have with sleep patterns and in many ways the ups and downs I used to get are things of the past.  The fatigues I used to get don't happen and whilst I know I'm not as fit as I ought to be I'm still much much better than last year, no longer out of breath or getting panic attacks/claustrophobia so regularly and I fit my clothes and actually feel good about myself.

I hope that as I recover from these biopsies I'll do some more exercise as I know I should (much as it sucks) to increase and perhaps accelerate weight loss and also, if there is any residual tendency towards Type 2 Diabetes in my system, to completely reverse that.  It would be good to go to my Doctor and show my Blood readings and shove those under his/her nose and question their letter to the Hospital and also ask why they didn't think to talk to me about it, advise me or get me tested (unless that is what the yearly blood test is actually about)?  It wasn't a fasting one last time so I kind of doubt it as far as I recall they need to make sure they aren't injuring my Kidneys.  Oh well - sure it will all come clear when I eventually get to see them.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

What to make of it all?

I have to say that it is difficult to know quite what to think about what has just happened to me and then to reflect back on a similar thing that happened in 2010.  Both resulted in me having to go into Hospital and have an Operation under a general anaesthetic and them finding nothing.  

You can look at this in a number of ways I suppose.  I could be predisposed to marking of the Bladder caused by the flexible cystoscope touching it as it enters the bladder.  It is after all the simplest explanation and the Occam's Razor - "It states that among competing hypotheses, the hypothesis with the fewest assumptions should be selected."

You see we could speculate that on both occasions that I had a recurrence and that somehow in the 4 or 5 weeks it took to have the operation that something I had done removed all trace of it?  It's hardly likely is it?  I'd say that perhaps I could have done something that affected the outcome but surely not to the point of a complete Houdini of a missing tumour.  Much as I'd like to think that having a body with a high Alkali pH and thumping Flax Seed Oil and Cottage Cheese (FOCC), the Budwig Protocol into myself regularly might have done something I think that perhaps they would only have made a small difference in the time available.

However I do feel that I should continue to keep my body as Alkali as possible, to continue with the FOCC on a regular basis and to continue to monitor myself as far as possible.  It's in my best interests to do this and it will keep me focussed on maintaining the lifestyle that I need to in order to minimise the chances of recurrence.  

I'm back where I was about 6 or 8 weeks ago before the time when I thought I'd seen the onset of having Bladder Cancer - a small object flew out of my urine stream - there could be many explanations for this but it alerted me to the possibility that I had a recurrence and then to hear I had was disappointing but I felt that I knew even though I haven't felt as well as I am now for a long, long time.

It's a new lease of life and it means that the Plan B contingency stuff can be moved to one side and Plan A can once again see the light of day.  It's complicated and I need to take a short while to readjust to being cancer free again.  Of course, until my Consultant calls me in for the results of the biopsies and what we are going to do next, I can't be absolutely sure but let's bring Occam back into this and it's the most logical outcome if they couldn't see anything there.

For the moment the relief is really beginning to manifest itself and I'm a "little emotional" about it.  I'm seeing my old school chums tomorrow night for a drink and so I'll celebrate with them and see where we go from there.

A Flying Start - Not

Well - I suppose it takes time to get used to taking your own blood readings :-)  I'm using an SD Codefree Blood Glucose Monitor which comes with a meter, a lancet stabbing device and first fill of lancets and test strips and a few other goodies.   I have a sharps bin to put all the nasty pointy things in and the used strips (with blood on them).  I bought myself a set of refills of the lancets and test strips.

So the first blood draw wasn't entirely successful. I bent the first lancet when I removed its cover!  So used another.  I wasted 4 yes 4 test strips and had to do two holes in my fingers to make it all work.  I think I've now worked out how to do this - as with everything its a matter of practice makes perfect.  The lancet is easy enough and I managed to draw blood on both goes.  What I didn't quite get right is getting the blood into the system.  I got errors that not enough blood was taken up.  I hadn't left the strip there long enough and hadn't got a drop big enough.  On the 5th attempt I shook my fingers and then pushed out a drop of blood slightly larger and it all worked fine.

The reading was 5.8 mmol/L which is within the non diabetic limit and - just for the hell of it just within the Type 2 range too.  The next one, 2 hours after my breakfast will start to build the picture.

I also started my blood pressure readings this morning and that was a satisfying 131 over 90 which is roughly where I want to be although lower would be nice.  My Blood pressure in Hospital was up in the 190 over 105 sort of area but I do get stressed out about visiting hospital and who wouldn't?

I'm content that I'm now recording this sort of information as I want to go and have "a chat" with my GP and discuss the Type 2 letter I saw in my Hospital file and for my own benefit I want to see that the 4HB diet works in terms of keeping blood glucose low.  This in turn keeps insulin low and should allow my body to burn off the stored fat.  A quick step on the scales this morning shows that I've now dipped below 16 stone and I'm around 15 stone 12 pounds.  I haven't used a tape measure to check various areas of my body - I'll wait until I've healed up a bit anyway.  I've dropped a neck size in my shirts and around 4 inches around my waist and a good few around my chest but also my arms and legs have lost some of their bulk too (not muscle I hasten to add), my watch is very loose on my wrist and my rings fit easily on to my fingers.  In fact I have to say I felt pretty good in the hospital, I actually didn't press anywhere on my gown which felt loose on me this time.  I didn't feel too hot or claustrophobic and generally I feel really well.

I'm hoping to build up a picture of my health which then can assist me to take a bit more control of things.

Late Again

I think I ought to give myself a break tomorrow - it's late again and I should be in bed resting, I can certainly feel my stomach and legs, my groin area and my urethra sorting themselves out and also my wrist from where the cannula was.  So whilst urinating is getting a little easier with each trip (and there are many drinking the amount I am) I can certainly feel bruises working their way out and things trying to settle themselves back into place.  The poor old urethra is straightened right out with a rigid cystoscopy and you can only begin to imagine all the pushing and shoving to get the instrument into your bladder and manipulated around.  I have the shaved leg too where the contact patch goes so that they can ground the other part of the instrument so when they burn out the biopsies it courturises the wound area.

I have to say that I'm most relieved with the outcome and trying not to count my chickens etc but it is nice to know that it wasn't a little tumour in there after all.  Whilst my Consultant sympathised with me about my "disappointment" of a recurrence after all this time, she did remind me that it was for exactly that reason that they had been keeping an eye on me.  I wonder though how other patients would react to having a false positive?  Me, well of course I wouldn't want to go through this again and it has been twice where I've had false positives.  But think about it another way, what if there HAD been something there?  At least this way we know for sure.  I'm not angry about it but I wonder if some people might be?  I'd say they would have every right to be upset that they'd had a procedure they didn't need but would they think of it the right way?

Your mind is very good at forgetting how rubbish the general anaesthetic makes you feel and all the build up and waiting and hanging around and the procedure itself - the stress has been massive this time I have to say.  I think that this was different to the last time.  Last time there was a red spot and they wanted to check that out.  This time it was a recurrence and had to be taken out.  It was to all intents and purposes being told you had cancer again which believe me is the last thing you want to hear.  Nevertheless, I'm where I am and thats what I've been dealt and now I've got to get on with it.

I kind of hope that my Consultant will consider some sort of procedure for me in future that minimises this sort of thing happening.  It has only happened when others have done my scope not her.  I know you empty your bladder just before going in, perhaps they can let me leave it so that they don't hit the bladder wall and cause false positives.  

Enough writing for tonight, off to bed and get some R&R :-)

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

FOCC - Mystery Solved?

You may recall I was having a bit of difficulty eating the FOCC mixture and so I decided to open a new bottle of Flax Seed Oil and try mixing that with Cottage Cheese - result?  It tasted fine and worked well with my Tuna salad - a little "wet" for my liking - so I just added a bit more tuna and voila it seemed to work out just fine with a taste and texture very similar to tuna mayonnaise and so I reckon that the other Flax Seed Oil must have started to turn rancid. 

I've poured the old one away and will use the new bottle from here on in.  

My urine tests were amazing this morning as the 4 biopsies are bleeding a little and the blood indicator was the top it could possibly be!  At least my test strips are working.  My Alkali pH level was around 7.5 and that's not bad - I've had some bicarbonate of soda today and intend to keep doing this although I will try some checks on pH with and without it in the future. 

I'm planning a whole series of things for my health starting in a week or two when I'm recovered.  This involves making my diet work together with reading my blood glucose levels, blood pressure and urine and bringing this all together.  I've now lost enough weight that I fit most of my suits and shirts but I need to move on to the next level and plan bringing more exercise into my daily life.  I think that in my mind I've settled on a plan (or plans) what to do from this point onwards but of course the recent hiccough in this through thinking I had cancer again has knocked planning to one side.  I need to spend some time with Mrs. F. so we can balance out the risk and reward stuff and also to agree on what I can and cannot do and the sort of investment I need to build a new business (or businesses).

I am looking at one other permanent position which is interesting but the travelling is the killer with it and it would need to be rewarding enough to allow me to finance a flat or apartment near the office as I really can't be doing with travelling for 4 to 6 hours a day which it can easily be even though it isn't a long way away it is still a difficult journey by rail or road. 

Monday, May 13, 2013

Scar War XI

Scar Wars XI
In A Galaxy Far, Far Away
The Hunt Is On For The Evil Red Spot
Appearing Every Few Years It Brings Fear And Anxiety To All Those Diagnosed With It
Our Hero, Dave SkyNando, Confronts His Fears Head On.  

I was hoping to use my Jedi mind skills with the nurse when confronted with the Type 2 Diabetes question.  "Are you a Diabetic?" I waved my arm "These aren't the Droids you're looking for!" No, that didn't work.  I did however explain that his notes said I was a Type 2 Diabetic (controlled by diet) and yet I had no knowledge of this fact and as I'd never been told by my Doctor :-)  We then spoke around what my glucose sugar levels were/are.  Now call me an old cynic but if I didn't know that I was a Diabetic and my Doctor hasn't bothered to test me for this or indeed talk to me about it then what could I say?  He suggested that he might take my blood glucose to which I asked what would he compare it with exactly.  we decided, whether by Jedi mind trick or me being bloody minded not to bother.

Once before have I been in at the crack of sparrows to the Hospital and very much like today should really have been given the later appointment.  There are two reporting in times 07:45 and 11:45.  I didn't go down to theatre until 15:00 and by my reckoning that's way over 7 hours without water and 16 hours without food.  There were a couple of us in this situation and we played last man standing (well woman in her case and she followed me).

Inevitably as these things are and I should have known better - I turned up at the Planned Investigation Unit only to be told that I was in the wrong place and I should be in Surgical Admissions.  Well of course I should be, that's where I always used to go until last time and the time before that.....  As you might realise all parts of this blog are to be read with a heavy sarcastic bent.  It was well packed but not uncomfortably so.  In fact it was all going rather well as within 25 minutes I had been reviewed, spoke to the anaesthetist and been consented and spoken to my consultant who I trust.  I told her how "disappointed" I was with the recurrence and she did say that they kept their eye on us for just such an eventuality and that it wasn't unusual for this to happen.  From the diagram she had and the description she felt that she may just be able to nip it out and she would review what was there and what to do about it after grading and we chatted about Mitomycin as a potential one off installation and had I had it before, which I had not.  SHe then said it was a little too early to discuss that yet but she'd get me sorted out no problem and I could go home straight afterwards if it was all straight forward.  I said I'd like that - she knows I don't like to hang around.

The day dragged on and my first MP3 player ran out of batteries at 11:20 and so I pulled out MP3 player 2 which ran through until I was called on to get changed and have my "chat" with the nurse :-)  The Theatre was very much as I was used to although they made a meal of getting the cannula in the back of my wrist.  My Blood Pressure readings were all very high and are something I must address - I'm very surprised at how high they are especially given my diet - they should be much lower.   I went out very quickly and came too feeling an urgent need to urinate - this is par for the course - the sting from the scope does this.  So they gave me a bottle.  It was then that my Consultant popped her head around the curtain and told me the good news.  There was nothing in the bladder, no signs of a recurrence and nothing else in the bladder either.  Previously (in 2010) she just let it go, this time she felt that she ought to take biopsies which she did (4 of them I believe).  She then said once I'd urinated twice I could go home.  That was good and I was moved to stage 2 recovery and given some water and coffee. Now I'm an old hand at this and so I threw down the first jug of water and also had 2 coffees.  The second jug of water took a little longer to drink and they ordered some food for me - I had to keep that down apparently :-)  and hour and a quarter later I managed to give a very full urine bottle to the nurse.  So pleased was he with it that he said that the one would be fine and I could go home.  Great - I was disconnected from the plasma and all the bleep, bleep, bleep machines and the Blood Pressure Monitor and allowed to get dressed.  My "I'm Not Dead Yet!" Monty Python Tee Shirt always brings a smile to people's faces and it was nice to then get a sandwich and orange juice and yoghurt (all of which are potential poison to me on a Protein Diet) and I ate and drank those with gusto as I hadn't eaten for about 18 or more hours by then.

I managed to phone Mrs. F. and she could collect me on her way home from work.  After having my cannula removed I I was transferred to the discharge lounge  by wheelchair and was collected and "signed for" by Mrs. F.  I had to make a couple of stops to the toilet just before and after this as the urgency to urinate is immediate.  The pain was pretty bad and so getting home and having some Ibuprofen and Paracetamol really eased that.  I see some blood from the biopsies and have had Mrs. F. place some old towels in bed as I'm leaking a little bit :-(

It's interesting that this is the second time I have been in to remove or investigate (I suppose) what looked like a recurrence and it turned out to be clear.  In some ways it is a bit worrying that this has happened and in others it is better (as my mate Flocky Bicep said) "Better to have an Op that you didn't need than to not have one that you did"  and of course that is right.  If it had of been a cancerous tumour it needed to come out and it is better to know I suppose.  But it throws up all sorts of questions and there aren't any easy answers to them.

An example is how come I saw something in my urine that I perceived to be a bit from a tumour? How come the doctor suggested that the cytology had come back positive (although it could be me reading an inference)?  Did he and the previous doctor just bash the wall of the bladder with their scope and there was nothing really there at all or was there really something there that disappeared (without trace) on both occasions?  The doctor actually drew the anemone shaped tumour and it's location on my medical notes.  Why did I see blood traces in my urine samples (although not recently)? Did going back to FOCC and bringing my body to a high pH (alkali) level get rid of what was in there (if it was)?  The trouble is that all of this data doesn't make any sense as it stands.

I'm certainly going to have a hard think about how I move on from here.  Everything is different again (without jumping to too much of a conclusion about the biopsies).  I've got my life back and I haven't got cancer which I thought I did have.  That's the thing above all that is great but did I have it in the last 4 weeks since the flexible cystoscopy?  Has something happened in between and the answer is????  Given the evidence, we will never know.  Did the Akali environment banish the little blighter from my bladder?  If so how come it left no trace?  It's all very peculiar and it has happened twice to me now.  Perhaps my bladder bruises easily?  My consultant explained that perhaps it had something to do with the way the bladder squeezes itself to eject the urine but whatever it has reignited my desire to do something about remaining cancer free.  I certainly have the tools and the inclination to do that.  More on that in later posts, for now the main thing is that it looks as if I am cancer free still.  Long may that continue.

May The Force Be With You! 

Something to Ponder

I'll write a bit more but:

  • No sign of tiny recurrence / tumour
  • No sign of anything untoward in bladder
  • Biopsies taken to check anyway
This is like Scar Wars X - then they saw a red mark / spot and did a TURBT only to find nothing.

What makes this different for me is:

  1. I thought I was some tissue fly out while urinating a few weeks before the flexible cystoscopy
  2. It is difficult to interpret but some of my urine strips appear to show trace blood 
  3. I thought the Locum suggested that my Cytology had results that supported his observations
  4. It is the second time this has happened to me - are there more false positives
I can't even begin to tell you what a relief this is for me.

A Couple Of Hours To Go

I've eaten a late (very) late meal of scrambled eggs.  They suggest that it is worth doing and I'm still drinking water.  It is just gone 1am and I'm winding down for the night.  I'm going to get up at 6 and have a shower and then get ready to go - I have to leave at 7:15 to be there at 7:45.  I hate the fact that I have to sit in Planned Investigations - I've seen people sitting there at 9 in the morning and I don't find that a great place - it is ridiculously hot too and so I'll sit near the door and get some breeze as that opens and closes.  I'll also just wear a light tee shirt too.

I have enough music on two MP3 players and my Phone so that if I am in overnight I can entertain myself.  I really don't speak to anyone as I'm really not that interested in discovering what people have or not and the quality of patient small talk isn't ever great I've found.

Some good wishes emails have arrived which were thoughtful and thankfully received.  Nice to know people are thinking about you.  This time tomorrow it will all be over and I guess I'll know something of what has happened and also what the next steps are likely to be.  I then need to get my arse into gear and sort out my future.  However the week is also full of meetings - Thursday Night - postponed drink with the lads (from Tuesday).  Friday Night a  Lodge meeting then I have two meetings on Saturday one with lunch and one with dinner (thank goodness it is cheat day).

I just hope they haven't beaten me about too much in the meantime.  Best get off to bed now - it's going to be a busy morning as three of us will be getting ready and having showers - hence I need to be up first - even more so that I can have a final drink at 06:30....

More when I get back.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

One Day To Go

It will most probably all be over by this time tomorrow - although the only other time I've been in early and didn't get seen until the late afternoon and was terribly dehydrated was probably the first or second time.  I can remember just waiting for ever and ever and eventually they took pity on me and let me rinse my mouth.  It didn't help we were waiting in a room with a water cooler!  Great :-)

I'm OK this morning - no jitters or nerves at the moment.  Had a good breakfast and continuing drinking water and I'm going to take it easy today.  I'll be reading up some more about Type 2 Diabetes but the more I read the remoter it is from how I am and how I feel but the proof will be when I do some blood work.  I haven't got a sharps bin yet so I will wait until I get that and after a day or so after I return from Hospital.  It will be interesting to get some readings and to record meals, weight, glucose and perhaps urine tests and my blood pressure over a period of time and then "have a conversation" with my GP.  I've just ordered my BP drugs online so let's see if that works again this time.  They haven't called me in for a review even though one is due and when I called they said to wait until there was an attachment on the prescription form.  

I've got my music and books (Kindle) ready to go in and my bag needs a final pack and that will be that.  I need to reread my notes from Wednesday's Pre-Assessment and make sure I eat and drink "up to the wire" ready for tomorrow.  They suggested, for the first time ever, not to take my Aspirin in the morning which is fine by me.  It's not as if I miss out on these - I think I have only ever missed one or two in all the time I've taken them and normally it would be a Statin on a late night back or falling asleep before taking it.

There's a Grand Prix on a little later so I will sit and watch that and study my books and see if I can make any sense at all of the Type 2 stuff.  The one thing I do know is that it is possible to reverse Type 2 and as I'm currently eating a low glycemic index, low insulin diet, albeit without the full exercise regime to go with it (I need to sort this out), I can't imagine I'm a Type 2 but there you go.  The tale of the tape - or blood monitor will tell and once I've got data to work with, then we can do something about it.  I certainly don't want to be in and out of the Hospital having loads of blood tests - I've enough to worry about with the "Tiny Recurrence" 

Let's hope that it is just that, tiny, insignificant and that I won't require treatment.  If I need to, then I need to but, let's see what happens.  With any luck my Alkali treatment will have kept things in check too.

Cheat Day - A Sort Of Non-Event

As if I hadn't had enough cheat days this week - but there you go.  I hardly did anything other than spike my system with some bread and beer.  Other than that - not much to report.

I am getting a bit of the jitters ahead of Monday but it looks like it will be a dry yet cold day and I'll probably walk to the Hospital.  I have my wife's number so I can call her at work (very rarely am I allowed to use that).  I have no idea how long I'll be there but I reckon that there won't be the pressure to get out I normally put on myself and so with a whole afternoon to leap through the hoops of things to be done to go home, it might be that I can come home as she comes home from work - that would be nice.

Feeling a tiny bit sorry for myself this evening but I suppose that I'm allowed to do that.  Getting a recurrence really is a nuisance and it throws up some long term concerns for me (us) too.  I was hoping to talk about some of those with Mrs. F. today but she was otherwise busy - maybe tomorrow :-)

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Good News

An ex-colleague has been given the all clear after 5 years of treatment. Good for her!

I went out last night to my friend's party and it was worth it.  It was one of those interesting evenings - I did well for most of it sticking to red wine when some wag decided to bring something called a J├Ągerbomb so I had two of those rather reluctantly I hasten to add.  The "hit" if I can call it that was in the Red Bull I guess and so having destroyed my best efforts to stick to diet we then went to a Turkish restaurant and ended up having a small beer and some great food which was also way off diet.  Got home OK and then sat in front of the TV watching a concert (Rush).

Feeling sort of OK this morning but a little stressed - it's difficult to explain.  It's a sort of anxiety which you can feel right inside your stomach and throughout your core.  It's manageable and that's the main thing.  I've started to get things ready and my Blood glucose monitor has arrived together with the spare lancets and test strips.  I don't have the sharps box yet (to dispose of the lancets) and whilst I've set it up I may just do a practice shot and then wait until after the hospital and operation to set up and do this regularly.

Friday, May 10, 2013

To Go Or Not To Go

I was umming and arring what to do and finally after Flocky gave me a call I decided I ought to go up to London to meet my mate - it is his 60th Birthday and in many ways whilst I don't feel that great, perhaps this will take my mind off things.  I certainly knew I'd feel  a bit rough by now and so it proves - my whole core feels ill but perhaps this change of scenery and my friends will cheer me up?

I got good news this morning from another Masonic Order I am in - I've got an active office for next year and a pretty senior one at that - it is totally unexpected but nevertheless appreciated and it is a great honour.  

Right off to get ready and head off to London for the party.

Thursday, May 09, 2013

Great Evening (and Afternoon for that matter)

I arrived at the station too early and found my travelling companion already there and so we jumped the early train and headed off to London - there was an almighty shower of rain as we got near but when we arrived it was quite pleasant and so we walked to Drury Lane and then popped into a pub and we had a couple of drinks prior to the meeting.  The meeting was really good as was the reception and meal afterwards - I do like Champagne and there was plenty of that to start with.  A number of us travelled home together and that was nice - we had quite a laugh on the train and I managed to get a laugh out of some of the travellers as I explained how my travelling companion had to change in another room to us but came in.  I suggested that we "give the old chap a few pence for a tea and send him on his way" :-)

Anyway, it was a very pleasant day and that's the great thing - finally we've gotten around to the fact that we are in this to enjoy it.  Some people don't get that.  It was nice to meet up with a number of the Masters and Secretaries - we all go to each other's meetings as honoured guests - affectionately known as the Mafia or the Red Apron Mafia.  I may even get to go out more next year as the chap taking over from me really isn't a travelling sort and so I may get to represent him during his year - who knows?

Chatting to a friend about the "diabetic" issue he was surprised that I'd not shown any symptoms considering the "masonic meals" I eat and also the drink and everything else.  I'm surprised too I have to say - I don't recollect having any Hypos but of course there is the day after cheat day when I do often feel rough and I would probably have eaten stuff that would spike my insulin - mind you this doesn't happen until the next day and so it's all a bit of a mystery.  At least all my stuff I notice has been dispatched and so I'll do some checking of my own on this.

Lots of people were wishing me well tonight and some who had heard were a bit distressed but others once I told them wished me well and I'm still pretty positive about all of this - it will be what it will be (of course) but the words used are "tiny recurrence" this is on the left wall of my bladder beyond the ureteric orifice.  I'm on the urgent list and so it obviously can't be left for too long but let's see what happens.

I'm certainly OK tonight about it - I feel fit and crazily I feel pretty healthy - losing the weight helped a lot of course and I hope that helps in recovery too.  

Another Day In London

I think I will make this the last thing I do before Monday - I need to go into my shell for a few days.  At least I'll be seen on Monday morning not have to wait until the afternoon.  They've told me to prepare for an overnight stay - not that I particularly want to do that but at least I have all afternoon to recover and see if I can get off home, whatever the terms and conditions are this time.  I've learnt not to pre guess them - they continue to change.

Today I'm meeting someone and we are off early so I need to start to get ready this morning!  I have to leave just after I've had lunch we will be there in plenty of time so perhaps can have a leisurely drink.

At least I shouldn't be home too late.  I'm still annoyed about this type 2 diabetes thing but I'll sort that out after I've been in and recovered.