I had a lovely Christmas and New, Years by the way. I Facetimed with my parents on Christmas day. I didn’t have loads of appetite so didn’t cook a big meal, but I did get takeaway curry On boxing day when the restaurants opened again.
I spent the weekend getting stuck into reading Paul McCartney’s book which a friend got for me (it’s called ‘lyrics’ and I’m obsessed) and watching the Get Back Beatles documentary. It was amazing. I even took myself out out for coffee after my appointment to the cancer centre on the Monday to get my bloods and covid swab done. I didn’t much feel like getting up to go to my appointment at 9am on the Monday after Christmas, but it meant I got to walk around part of my beautiful city and exist within it for a few beautiful moments.
So all in all, a very restful Beatles Christmas.
Chemo cycle two is over, I had a lovely 3 night sleepover with my friend Shiri. It’s nice to have time to just exist in each other’s company. We spent new year’s eve walking to find Tim Tams and various other snacks and then drank non alcoholic fizz and watched Schitts Creek (until I feel asleep at around 10). We were also treated to a livestream of my friend India’s Circus, which felt like such a treat.
Not much to report from the chemo, really. We did not deem me to be ‘confused, drowsy or disorientated’ (the reason I need someone staying with me is to check for this) though I definitely feel the chemo brain on this one. Apparently this drug crosses the blood-brain barrier, which my last ones didn’t.
The days passed by as days do, I sit in the chair for 5 hours while the chemo pumps into me, then off I go to the Cotton Rooms with my backpack filled with water and Mesna (for my kidneys). They always take my observations the second I get in and wonder why my heart rate was high. Well you see I left home late because I wanted a smoothie AND a coffee before I went and so I walked fast to make up for it… It usually slows down after a while. The nurses always seem confused that my heart rate goes up and down depending on what’s going on. Even just the process of getting your arm ready and talking animatedly to the nurses as they do it can spike heart rate – this is obvious to me, but apparently not to them. They wonder if something is wrong, I just tell them to wait a moment and I’ll relax and it’ll come down. Miraculous.
You’ll be happy to know I didn’t throw up my Mesna tablets this time, which was nice, I think this 4 day cycle is agreeing with me. But we shall see. I’m back on the temperature hunt to see if I need to rush into hospital.
People ask ‘how I am’ and it’s always been a question I don’t know how to answer. I never know what they’re asking and it feels too big, too all-encompassing a question. And a question that must be re-tailored to each person depending on who asks it.
I’m tired, every part of me feels like it’s bruised, I’ve got electric twinges on my hands (which makes me drop things), as well as across my back and chest, I keep smelling the scent of rubber, I had to rest after getting my groceries up a flight of steps exhausted me. The usual. I feel first-day-after-chemo. And I know it’ll get worse over the next week or so. But I’m in my flat where I will stay for the next week or so, temperature dependent, and I’ve got my Paul McCartney book, and music to listen to and play (I accidentally spent my evening after I got disconnected from chemo recording some vocals for one of my songs) and so I’m ok. I’m here and writing and alive.
I’ll say one thing for my last hospital admission – the cleaners dealt with the fallout (haha) from my hair – I walked into hospital with a full head of hair but walked out a baldie. I’m having some fun embracing wigs this time, finding ones that make me feel like me. This one makes me wonder if I’ve not just had that hair my whole life.