Drama queen #Sarcoma #cancer

Greetings from Clatterbridge

Well, I’m here for my penultimate cycle and, knowing me, it’s not without it’s dramas. So I had my PICC line out because the dressings were too harsh for my skin, this means my treatment needs to be administered by a cannula. I’ve had to be re-cannulated each day!! Tonight’s drama started as soon as the Doxirubicin was pumping in. My skin burned and my arm swelled up so we had to stop, withdraw the chemo that had gone in, remove my cannula, wear an ice pack on affected area for 30 minutes, apply cream and the poor nurse had to fill in approx 29 forms….! So for the next 24 hours I need to be monitored and every two hours I need an ice pack for 30 minutes and cream applying…..so that’s no sleep for me and no discharge until 5pm tomorrow 😦

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Visits
I’ve had a busy few days with visitors. Thanks to Vicky, Mindy, Leanne, Joe, Vicky, Paul & Helen & the mini macs. Not forgetting my lovely mum & dad, Mike & Beckii and the amazing John who have all been here daily. Was lovely to see you all….see you on my next cycle!!!

P.s thanks for my voddy Leanne!!!!

New year, same fight #Sarcoma

Happy New Year everyone!!!

Since my diagnosis in October 2012, I’ve been determined to live life to the fullest. In 2013, I partied, had fun, went back to work…and (my favourite) travelled a bit. I went to Amsterdam (again), Prague where we got robbed off a taxi driver (turned out he only nicked £3.50!), Edinburgh numerous times, and to the lovely Antigua (the same hotel where Nicole took The Girls on The X Factor). I’ve learned to appreciate life and will continue (after treatment of course) this lifestyle in 2014 and beyond.

Festive Fun
I’ve had a manic Christmas and New Year. I only finished my last cycle on 22nd December so everything was a blur until Christmas Eve. We went to Liverpool for the night and stayed in a swanky hotel with Dave and Sabrina who were down from Edinburgh. We had good intentions of “we won’t have a heavy night” and “we don’t want a hangover on Christmas Day”….. Yeah right! After a fantastic Brazilian (meal, not the wax) we ended up in the hotel bar drinking Laurent Perrier Rose champagne and trying to convince the Latvian (I think) barman to move to Edinburgh……
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We had a great start to Christmas Day, the four of us having breakfast in the hotel restaurant, in Christmas jumpers singing like idiots.

14 of us had Christmas Dinner at my mums. My appetite still wasn’t 100% but I managed most of the meal – thanks Mum. I will make Christmas Dinner next year…..

Last New Years Eve I was having radiotherapy so we just had a quiet night at home. I thought this year would be the same and didn’t think it was fair on my lovely other half. So….we booked a week, with my older sister and her family, at Whitewell Cottages in Ty Nant. We had a week of eating, drinking, laughing, crying and realising that John is a sore loser at all games….
The Crazy Clan
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2014
I only have two cycles of chemo left (not that I am counting!) and I will have a month between chemo and surgery so we are looking to sneak a well deserved trip abroad in 🙂

Today I read that pancreatic cancer is one of the deadliest cancers with only 4% of people diagnosed surviving past five years. Sarcoma is at a 50% rate. I will be in the 50% that survive this. These stats are horrendous and we must find a cure for cancer.

4th cycle, thanks yous and goodbyes…. #Sarcoma

I’m back in hospital having my 4th cycle of chemotherapy. I was particularly poorly after my last cycle and ended up in Warrington Hospital. Luckily it wasn’t too serious and I was soon sent packing with antibiotics, creams and other random medicines….which all made me better 🙂
Hopefully this cycle will be kinder to me!

Anyway, I have a few thank yous for fundraising efforts recently

Firstly, I’d like to thank everyone at work who raised money for me. Special thanks to Claire, Joe and Bev who arranged the “Dizzytix Day” and raised £800 in cake sales, raffles, auctions and more. Thanks so much to everyone who helped, donated or took part and a huge thank you to the MD Andrew who matched the fundraising bringing the total to almost £1700. I was overwhelmed and emotional when I found out about the day and how generous people had been so a huge thank you. I’ve used a portion of the money to buy my latest wig and will put the rest to good use.

Next, thanks to Alison and her son Aaron who ran The Santa Dash in Wigan. They raised money for Joseph’s Goal and Sarcoma UK. Both charities received £105 which is brilliant. They look fab!!
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Thirdly, thanks to Matt and the customers at The Bridge Inn in Burtonwood who raised £73 on Halloween. They asked my uncle Kev to nominate a charity and he kindly donated the money to The Clatterbridge Cancer.

Lastly, a huge thank you to my sister for raising funds for Sarcoma UK by holding a Body Shop at home party. She raised over £210 from us donating 10% equivalent of her sales and holding a successful raffle. She has also donated her hostess gifts so we can raffle these for more money.
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Well done and a huge thank you to everyone, it means so much that you chose me and these charities

Goodbye
Today we said goodbye to one of the loveliest men around-my cousin Neil. Neil was 44 and passed away unexpectedly last week.
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Remember to tell those close to you that you love them, to not put off ’til tomorrow what you can do today and to enjoy life.

Goodnight and godbless the lovely Neil xxx

Good news….. #Sarcoma

Hey,

I’ve been absolutely manic for the last two weeks so apologies for not doing an update earlier.

I had a CT scan last Friday and went to see Dr Ali for the results today. There was bad news and good news. The bad news is that the main tumour wasn’t 15mm, it was more like 50mm. The two at the top of my left lung were 10mm each. I was shocked to hear this as I was working off 15mm…… Anyhow, I got over the shock and was pleased to learn that all three have shrunk by more than 50%!!!! Dr Ali showed John and I the scans and it was amazing to see the difference. One of the mets has shrunk so much that I think it will disappear by the end of the chemo! When I started this treatment, the objective was to STOP the tumours growing and anything else was a bonus so I am really happy with the way things are going.

Dr Ali said that he may just give me one more cycle of chemo but we agreed that as I’m coping so well with it we may as well blast the little buggers (Dr Ali didn’t say that hee hee) and complete the full six cycles. He is now going to involve a thoracic surgeon so we can plan the next stage of my treatment.

Thanks Mum and Dad for these gorgeous flowers from Nancy Moon flowers and the prosecco (that we will have with Chambord!!)
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The Penguin Tree
The Penguin Tree created a lovely paper cut design and donated proceeds from each one to Sarcoma UK. Here’s mine!
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You can visit The Penguin Tree here

Hope you are all ready for Christmas!

Bye for now xx

People are so generous…. #Sarcoma

In addition to being scary, life threatening, hell, plus many other things, having cancer can also be quite costly. Costs can be incurred from being off sick, cost of fuel/parking for numerous appointments, being out all day and needing food/drinks, visiting, and other costs such as new clothes when you lose weight and wigs when you lose your hair. It all adds up in ways that you would never imagine.

During this bout of illness I have been taken aback by people’s generosity. From Bev taking time to take me to hospital, to the Scottish McTickles taking me for appointments when they are down and to people buying me tea and cake 🙂 Every little thing helps, even just popping round for a brew really means a lot to us.

But I was completely overwhelmed by the generosity of a colleague in our Crawley office. Tina, sadly, lost her father on New Years Eve 2012 to cancer, and the family had asked for donations for the funeral. Tina, her sister and her mother had not used this money yet and wanted to put the money to good use…..so they have offered some of this money to buy me a real hair wig. I was so surprised that people could be so generous and thoughtful that I cried when I heard the news. A real hair wig is expensive and is not a luxury I could afford at the moment. I am so grateful and would sincerely like to thank Tina and her family for such a wonderful and caring gift.

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Cycle 2, hair fun and @mastermindquiz @sarcoma_UK

Cycle 2
Hey all, just thought I’d drop a line now I’ve had my 2nd cycle of chemo. I left Clatterbridge on Sunday and honestly have to say that I feel, well, ok. I’m confused as I’m on a combination chemotherapy of Doxirubicin and Ifosomide. Now don’t get me wrong, whilst in hospital I do feel sick but since leaving I’ve taken 3 anti sickness tablets whereas last time I took 3 per day for 8 days. Dr Ali did say that I may not suffer too much with side effects as I’m young, fit and healthy but I am certainly surprised.

I had lots of visitors when I was in hospital and my favourite was when Paul & Helen brought the Mini Macs. Maisie and Isobel were fascinated with Bert and how the ‘medicine’ went into my body via the PICC line. They weren’t scared and even touched my shaved head. Cutie Isobel had asked “What if Aunty Emma doesn’t look like Aunty Emma anymore….?” As soon as she heard my big mouth she realised all was ok….. 🙂

On Tuesday I had to go for my dressing on the PICC line changed. I opted to go to Halton as it’s closer than going to The Wirral. I have to say, it was so surreal on the CanTreat day ward. I was sat with ten other people, who were having chemo, with ten “Bert’s” beeping….CONSTANTLY! You see, when I’m in hospital, I’m in my bed, hooked to Bert, watching telly, having visitors and only see a few people having treatment. At the CanTreat ward you are sat in a circle, having treatment together. I found it really upsetting and sad. I better get used to it as I have to go each week for my dressing changed :/

Wiggin’ it
I finally got the confidence to wear my long wig this week……and I bloody love it!! I went to Debenhams and a lady approached me to tell me my hair was beautiful. There was a moment of uncomfortable silence as I wasn’t sure if I was supposed to tell her it was fake or what, so I just said thank you and she walked away muttering that it was just gorgeous.

I had my short wig on yesterday and went to the butchers. As the butcher was serving me, she commented on how lovely my hair was……!

The wig love is really boosting my confidence right now!

Celebrity Mastermind
Sarcoma UK gave me two tickets to be in the audience of Celebrity Mastermind last night. So off we went to the BBC studios for a date night. When we got there Ted Robbins was the ‘warm up man’ and asked for a volunteer to test the black chair out. Needless to say, shy old me ended up on stage…..I pranced about and was fake quizzed by the funny man while we demonstrated to the audience what would happen during filming. It was brilliant! When filming commenced we were sat right behind John Humpreys so we may just get on the telly!! When we were eating our meal in Prezzo afterwards, a lady asked if I was Emma, the test lady! Oh to be famous…..

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It’s all about the hair…. #Sarcoma

Hi all, just a quick update to say my hair has started to go now. Luckily I went to The Wiggins (Penny Lane, Liverpool) and bought two beautiful wigs this week. One is a bob for daily use and the other is a glamorous ‘Holly Willoughby’ style wig for when I go out out….

I only had to pay for the bobbed wig as the long one was free. This is because I have my chemotherapy as an in patient. The wig was £155 so I am very grateful and lucky that I qualified for this benefit.

Here’s a pic of me and John out and about today in said wig 🙂

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