Where to begin

Who am I?

I’ve re-read my original post and realise I haven’t introduced myself. I am a 50 something lady living in the East Midlands of England with my husband, 20 year old son and nearly 18 year old daughter.

Around this time in 2015 life was plodding along nicely. Ourtrophy pic life revolved around music and the occasional bike ride, a bit of running and more music – OK just to warn you, this blog may turn out to be as much about music as anything else. So what changed this state of affairs – a diagnosis of breast cancer. To make my writing of this blog easier I am going to try and keep this blog on a rough timeline of the run up to my diagnosis.

Back in May 2015 our band decided to go on a road trip to Weston Super Mare. This was almost going home for my husband and myself as our first house together was in the next town up the road. We had last played in this contest some 20 years earlier and it was great to return to play with the kids. The band played well and we won the competition, had great fun playing cricket on the beach (ok the kids played and we watched), and met up with lots of old friends who we had not seen for years.

I felt fine. No idea of what was going to happen. Unusually I had been ill earlier in the year, a bought of flu (even with a flu jab courtesy of my employers) and a weird abscess on my head which I ended up going to the doctors about.

How Am I?

Jump forward to now, how am I? To be honest I am feeling better than I have for a long time.  Although my active treatment finished almost a year ago I have been suffering really bad fatigue recently which resulted in me cutting down my hours at work. A trip to the doctors, some blood tests and an intensive course of vitamin D seems to have done me good. Have read up on it, as you do, apparently my factor 50 sun cream that I now slap on my arm every day (in an attempt to stay off lymphedema) inhibits the absorption of sun and hence the manufacture of vitamin D so I am now taking vitamin D supplement. One of the ongoing joys of living after cancer.

Do I feel “normal” no, not what normal was but maybe now my new normal is starting to be defined. 

New Boob Day

P1060847And finally ….. today is “new boob day“. No P1060848I haven’t gone down the route of having reconstruction following my mastectomy but I have today picked up my new prosthesis in it’s nice pink bag. I’ve gone up a size in the last 2 years – thought I’d put on weight – and apparently a left sided boob looked better than a right sided one!




What is Normal?

It was suggested to me that I write a blog, that people might actually be interested in what I have been through. So here I am sat in front of a blank screen and it’s a bit daunting.

The aim of the blog is to recount how I am “getting back to normal” after treatment for breast cancer but unless you knew be before you will have no idea of who my life has changed.

That’s a starting point I suppose. Life comes in phases

There is that dim and distant “before school” phase followed by the wonderful(!) “school days”. For some these are swiftly followed by the “university days” but not for me – girls at my school were not encouraged to go to uni in the early 80s – so I skipped this phase and went straight to the “working phase”.

The “working phase” runs alongside various other life phases. Meeting the other half, the “courting phase”, followed some 8 years later by the “marriage phase” and then the “children phase” through whom you relive the early phases of your life.

So where am I know? Through my children I am coming to the end of the school phase and starting on the university phase.

It is very easy to lump all of these as the “pre-cancer phase” of my life – which it was but I cannot and will not let cancer define me like that. The “Cancer phase” was, in the grand scheme of things, fairly short – from the first trip to the doctors to end of treatment around 2 years.

So where am I now? I think this is the “rediscovery phase“. Treatment is finished but I am yet to define my new “normal”. Normal will never be what it was, but will hopefully improve as time goes on.

Normal will never be what it was, but will hopefully improve as time goes on.

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