Waking Chloe up for 10am was non-trivial as she’d only just gone to bed. We nipped in to Sally’s coffee morning on the way for banana cake and green tea. Then Park and Ride. We walked into the Day Unit. ‘How different is this from how you imagined it from the description in the blog?’ I asked her.
‘Totally different’ she said. ‘I didn’t realise everyone would be sitting around the walls together. I thought you would be in a little room on your own. And I thought everyone would be crying.’
Well, it’s obv she didn’t read it properly. It is clear to me though that I have been lacking in descriptive skills. Attempt Number 2 then: patients either have a bed with sheets and blankets or a shiny leather-look dark blue armchair. Most have another person sitting with them. There is a drip stand on wheels by every bed or chair. In the centre of the room is a giant table with trays full of drug bags or syringes, and equipment like tape, tubes, needles etc. On small tables beside each chair there are cardboard receptacles for throwing up into. There is a trolley where your helper can get tea. The windows are massive and there is good natural light. There are two other connecting rooms off the bigger room which hold maybe six or seven armchairs. Patients trundle their drips to the loo regularly because they are drinking like mad to flush out the poisons. The atmosphere is pretty chilled as most people are laughing and greeting each other like old friends. A few seem more anxious and still.
My nurse today was Sanjay. He told us he was from India and Mauritius. He was extremely skilled. Gave me anti-sickness and some steroids. Waited twenty minutes. The needle went in with no pain. With FEC the nurse has to stay for the entire infusion time and keep watch. He checked my hand constantly for leakage around the vein. He had four syringes on a tray which he inserted one after the other into the tube feed. Two big red ones, Epirubicin. It is strong, he told us. He seemed less worried about the two smaller syringes with the Fluoro-whatever-it-is, and the Cyclo-whatever-it-is.
Chloe went and chatted to my chemo-friend Heather who was sadly four seats away from me. ‘I put you in the blog, Heather,’ I shouted. ‘Do you mind?’
‘No, not at all,’ she yelled, looking pleased.
Oh, good, I’ll do it again then.
Came home feeling fine. Ate a big sprouty salad with Chloe. Won’t say what was intilt as thinking about food is now making me feel sick. Claire came round and we made snacks for the Ladies’ Club. Won’t mention them either (snacks not ladies) as might make vomcanos. The ladies don’t make me vom, I love the ladies. We got the Dubonnet and Cinzano and lemonade ready. Lit a fire and gathered the sofas round it. We cocked our pinkies at the ready.
If you have been paying attention, you will know that because nobody drank any gin at the last Gin Club, we are investigating if a ‘Ladies Club’ could match our requirements any better. For my readers from far-off climes, we are referring to a sketch from a TV show called Little Britain that involves two blokes trying and spectacularly failing to be Ladies. Yes! The blog has gone global: 1 hit per day from Indonesia (my friend Dave), 1 hit from Sweden (Annika), 1 hit from the United Arab Emirates (our friend Claire-who-lives-in-Dubai), 1 from Peru (that’s Nay), 1 from Fred’s mate Jai in India, 1 from Jill in Australia, 1 from Triffi in Hong Kong … I could go on. Plus loads from Europe, Canada and the US. You should see the stats map light up! Thrilling.
Anyway, Mad Lucy’s Nigel heard about the Ladies’ Club and made me this lovely pic. This time I didn’t have to dress up for it. It’s FAKE.
God though, my friends couldn’t be more crap at being Ladies. I had to tell Claire off for burping raucously, and chatise Mad Lucy for sprawling about in her leggings and flashing her boobs (again!). I also had to give several warnings to a friend-who-shall-not-be-named (she has internet phobia so shall be referred to as ‘X’ even though her name obv doesn’t begin with ‘X’) that her laugh is not befitting of a Ladies’ group. She must tinkle and titter, not howl nor roar.
I drank superberry juice with the merest dribble of Dubonnet because I had vomfear, which ended up being justified.
Am currently sitting up, very still, in bed. I think I got the yellow anti-sickness tab Ondansetron down me just in time. Am fighting serious waves of nausea though. There is no escape as the steroids keep you awake. Fred brought me sticky rice and ….oh, sorry can’t say, will vom. Had to send it away. Bucket at the ready. Just reached the point of moaning and groaning when I remembered the other anti-sickness pills (Domperidone) which seem to be helping. I am nevertheless incapacitated, so Chloe has helped me type (hey friends, you guys literally ROCK!).
BTDubs, Blog Wars or wot? Fred’s blog has also gone ‘global’ but I’m not wuzzed: his will never be The Breast.