I can’t say that I’ve been very good at this blogging lark – I mean, I haven’t written a post for years – but I’m suddenly aware that this is probably the best place to get a few things off my chest which don’t fit in the general atmosphere of Facebook or Twitter. This is fundamentally a sort of apology to any of my friends who might have found me a bit distant or lacking my customary enthusiasm and bonhomie of late.
Thing is, I’ve been a bit preoccupied by the health problems of a few people over the past three or four months, and now that the situation has become clearer, it’s time to come clean. It all started when my oldest friend, who has suffered from a malignant growth on the spine for about three years, needed to go back into hospital for more treatment. This involved having his bone marrow harvested and stored, some heavy chemo, and then restoration of the bone marrow. This process is supposed to take about 4 weeks, during which time he has to be in an isolation ward. Unfortunately, he suffered septicaemia in hospital and was very poorly for a while, which meant he stayed in for over six weeks and subsequently had a slow recovery at home. Fortunately, he now seems to be very much on the mend and has resumed normal life (as far as possible). However, I’ve needed to spend a good amount of time hospital and home visiting (as well as having to run my business on my own – he usually helps out), so I haven’t had as much time for my usual activities as is customary, and when I have I might well have been a bit preoccupied.
About six weeks ago my sister had a routine body scan as part of her regular skin cancer treatment, and they detected a growth in her lung. A biopsy was taken and she was told that it was malignant ,although very slow-growing. The recommended treatment was excision, which was done in mid-October. Whilst the operation is quite straightforward, involving removal of two of the seventeen lobes of her lung, the recovery period is rather long: six weeks unable to drive or lift objects, then another six weeks off work. Luckily, her workplace have been very supportive, so there are no problems there. When she came out of hospital, she stayed with me and my father for a couple of weeks while she began her recovery – she went home last weekend – so I’ve been a little busier than normal looking after her (mind you, she was a model patient!). She had her follow-up visit to her consultant on Tuesday, where she learnt that following tests on the tumour, they have decided it wasn’t malignant after all – still, better out than in! So it seems she’s going to be fine.
While she was in hospital, my father heard from his GP that one of his recent blood tests had been abnormal, and they had made an appointment for him to see a specialist. We trekked over to Beckenham Beacon last week to see the urologist, who confirmed after examination that he had prostate cancer. Pills and an injection were prescribed, and a bone scan arranged (which takes place tomorrow, as it happens), but little was explained. However, we went for the injection this morning, where the urology nurse was more forthcoming (and reassuring) – in her words, he was far more likely to die of something else first than succumb to the cancer! So he came away feeling much happier, after a couple of worrying weeks.
Anyway, now that all three of my ‘patients’ seem to be on the road, if not to recovery, at least to a comfortable life for a while, I can relax again. Apologies once again to everyone I’ve neglected of late – I’ll try to be more attentive in future. Good health to you all!