Woah hey look, she lives!

I can only apologise for my radio silence. I know none of you would blame me for a moment, but I’m sure you have all been concerned, intrigued, interested… Some combination of all of the above, maybe some other things too.

I have not been up to writing at all, and I’m still not. But I do have a lot of stories too tell, and they will come out.

For now, I will give you the quick run through.

I went into surgery at UCLH on the 5th, came out late (16 hr surgery) and started the recovery process. It was gruelling. Then on the Saturday morning, day 7, suddenly the new bit, the ‘flap’ of skin from my shoulder that was making up the roof of my mouth suddenly started failing..They hoped it wouldn’t be serious and they put me back into emergency surgery, hoping to save it in the 6 hour window they apparently had, planning on a 4-6 hour surgery. So before long they had me under and when I woke up I found out it had been another big 10 hour surgery in which they had taken a blood supply from my leg, to bypass a clot that had formed in my neck.

Thanks for all your well wishes everyone, they meant so much but unfortunately the first attempt didn’t go so well. You never expect the ‘in small cases this might happen’ will happen to you but I guess it can.

So that’s two massive surgeries in the space of a week, mere weeks after completing 6 months of chemo. My face was so swollen, my shoulder hurt, I couldn’t talk, I was in so much pain from my cannulas, I felt like I was dying. Each day I woke up feeling worse.

We’re now at day 5 of surgery number 2, day 12 in total. This morning I felt worse than before too. My face and new mouth are so swollen. But I’ve had some wins today (I’ve even managed to do some talking today) so I’m hopeful that I’m getting close to tomorrow being a better day.

To friends who have been here with me since before the surgery, thank you for your patience, your support and your messages – some I’ve had a chance to read, some I haven’t but I will, and I plan to reply to them all.

Mum and Dad, thanks for coming by to see every day. The days when I was too tired to hold a conversation, the days when I hadn’t slept at all and was demoralised, sore, confused and frustrated, the days when I had wins, the days when everything was failing apart. Thank you for pulling me back into consciousness after surgery.

To all my new friends, you are some of the most amazing people I have ever met and you have kept me going through the hardest time of my life with the greatest smiles, the most amazing attitudes and so much patience.

I had a visit this morning from one of my surgical team, as I do most days – Deepti is amazing, just seeing her face makes me smile each day no matter how bad things are. She’s a total rockstar. She mentioned she had been reading the blog and I thought gee, it’s time I wrote you all something at least, even if it hasn’t been much.

So to everyone reading this, thank you from the bottom of my heart. I’m not going to lie, there have been many days when I have wondered if it’s all worth it. But you do all help me through.

I’ll be back when I can. Still not out of the woods but still (hopefully) going in the right direction).

I am desperate for a sip of water, then of course cup of tea.

I will post photos at some point. I warn you, they’re very real. Scary.

16 thoughts on “Woah hey look, she lives!

  1. Pat Banister

    What! Words at last. I knew it would only be a matter of time before another report. I don’t think anyone thought it would be this long though. I think we’ve all felt empty without your reports. It’s a long and rocky road but if there’s anyone who can walk it, it will be you. If ever you begin to tire just look to one side or the other and there will be friends standing there waiting to help. Pat.B.


    1. Believe me, it was one of the first things I thought of, it was on my mind a lot of the time and the second I was able put these words down, I did. Glad to be back now!
      I certainly feel very lucky, very supported, very loved from just about everywhere!! 🙂


  2. Ashlea Ross

    Oh Jen you are so strong! I’ve been thinking about you and praying for successful surgeries and fast recovery. I have been waiting for your updates. I am so encouraged by your determination xx


  3. Katrina

    So sorry to hear that you’ve had to face two mammoth surgeries instead of just the one but if anyone is strong enough to come out fighting the other side it’s you! Hope the recovery continues apace – will be thinking of you x


    1. Yeah, not what anyone wants, but if it results in it all turning out well then it’s definitely for the best, even if it was hell at the time! Your turn soon! Hopefully it moves a bit smoother than mine! x


  4. Jax

    Hey Jen, we don’t know each other, but I stumbled on your blog by way of Instagram as my husband is also being treated for cancer at UCH, so I’m a daily visitor. I just wanted to say hang in there, you got this. Sounds like you’ve shown such incredible strength so far, and am hoping each day is easier for you now. Sending you positive vibes from the 13th floor!


    1. Oh wow! Hi! Thanks for the message! Hope all is well on the 13th floor and things are going well for your husband, he’s lucky he has you!
      We’ll make it through this!


  5. Jan Hardy

    Hello Jen
    I have just finished reading your blog, my dear friends Wendy and Ian told me about your horrendous ordeal. They know your folks. Wendy suggested that they might be in need of accommodation. I may be able to help them and would like to make life a little easier for you all.
    With my best wishes to you.
    Jan Hardy

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for the comment! Thanks so much for the offer, that is so kind! I think they’re pretty sorted for the rest of their stay, but I’ve let them know and we’ll get in touch if need be!
      Much love!!


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