I am delighted to say that I have now completed all my treatment!! September was Radiotherapy month and now I can put it behind me. The treatment itself wasn’t bad at all, if you don’t think about the risk of possible long term side effects. I now have one slightly pink and tender boob, but am told I’ll be on the mend in about 2 weeks time. The radiotherapy keeps working for 2 weeks after the treatment has stopped, so the soreness could get worse before it gets better. I’m used to wearing my ‘comfort bra’s’ or indeed sometimes going braless – oooh racy eh?! Its about racy as I get at the moment!!
A friend of mine says I’m likely to get depressed now that the treatment is over. Largely because I now have time to sit back and reflect on all that has happened, my survival instincts and adrenaline to get through each day of driving to the hospital and treatment are no longer required, so I can see how this might happen. But I’m determined not to start sitting around feeling sorry for myself. Instead I am going to sit around feeling how lucky I am!! ;) On the first day of my 'new life' I did the ironing and watched a ‘chick flick’, without feeling guilty at all. Yes, I have quit my office job – it wasn’t an easy decision to make. I had a gut feeling that I didn’t want to return to it, but simply put – I felt obliged to go back, and of course the extra money is always useful, but a lot of hassle goes into earning it and then it’s gone in a flash! My company had been so good to me during my illness, not putting pressure on me, paying me more than they are legally required to do and expressing their concern for me. But when it came to crunch time, I just had to go with my gut and fortunately, we are in the financial situation where we can scrape by on one salary. My DH is a very hardworking and ambitious fella. He has done a grand job of providing for me and the kids ever since I stopped work in London 8 years ago. Don’t get me wrong, I do not expect him to be the only bread winner forever. But for now, while I get my strength back and whilst my children are still young (6 and 8) I’m going to enjoy having TIME for myself and for motherly duties, instead of rushing around like a blue-arsed fly in a permanent state of guilt and exhaustion. This is one good thing that has come from my cancer journey.
The chemo has left me with aches and pains and extra flab around my middle, so I am going to slowly but surely improve my fitness and loose some weight. I've joined a weekly yoga class, the first one last week was really enjoyable. I need to loose a stone, so I’m going to do “speed walking” (I don’t do running) and Zumba – which is perfect for sweating whilst having a laugh.
Having a laugh – that’s high on my things to do list too! This year has been so full of stress, fear and pain that I cannot take any more and it’s time to change. It’s all a state of mind you know. I’m rather into complimentary therapies and during my trips to the hospital last month I took advantage of some free therapy sessions in the cancer support centre. I had a free Indian Head Massage, which was AMAZING and very relaxing, and a free Hypnotherapy session which was a rather strange experience but interesting too. I also had 2 BodyTalk sessions. This is a tricky one to describe, so click here if you want to know more. But basically I left with a feeling of lightness and brightness, mentally speaking. The lady also taught me a technique to use at home, which involves deep breathing, placing hands in certain positions on my head and tapping on my forehead and chest - which sounds rather bizarre doesn't it - yet it leaves my mind feeling more focused AND it makes me laugh (I realise I look ridiculous), so it must be good for me!! I'm sure that using these complimentary therapies, plus yoga and other exercise will help me get back in shape mentally and physically and hopefully regain my sense of humour! That's the plan anyway, I'll just see where it takes me.