One of the most interesting things for me is the variety a ways in which cancer survivors find different ways to express themselves. We allOn have cancer but we find different voices to express it. This author, who goes by the moniker Eclectic Chicken, has been a longtime blogger. But her original subject matter morphed into her cancer journey shortly after her diagnosis with non-Hodgkins lymphoma. She sends out her blog from the United Kingdom. Check out changeling times. Take care, Dennis
Interminable medical stuff…. February 8, 2013
You wanted a blog about my medical emergency vomiting skills and what you got was a ramble about the National Curriculum?
Sometimes dear reader(s) [in case both of you look in on the same day]… you are so predictable.
Meg has been at home… originally with the intention of covering a day and evening where Jane was in London – but the London trip was cancelled so Meg just made herself generally useful – keeping me entertained, lifts to appointments, distracting the boy and the dog (sometimes at the same time) and cooking me things I fancy to eat.
This time she caught me on my steroid days on which, if nobody feeds me, I will eat my own feet and my elbows too.
Its a gluten free cake.. so its base is ground almonds… its chocolate and orange, almond cake and it has cherries on the top – so the theory was it was almost a fruit salad for someone who doesn’t get to eat much fruit and vegetables.
And to go with the cake… a beef stew…. weeeeell… it started off as a vegetable stew with some beef in it but once I’d crossed off all the veg i’d struggle with or don’t like it was a beef and carrot and neep in beery gravy stew with DUMPLINGS… big dumplings.
I have to admit… I ate three.
And quite a lot of cake.
And the truth of it is… that THAT sort of thing isn’t what’s meant by ‘little and light and often’.
(though the dumplings were admirably light by dumpling standards).
So not long after Meg texted me to tell me she was back up North I decided that I was feeling kinda queer in a…distended stomach….headachey….crampy….shallow breathing sort of a ….and then I was sick.
I woke Jane up… rang the hospital (who said I should report to A&E)…got dressed… woke the boy and we all bundled into the car at about half one in the morning.
Blah blah blah…. A&E….copious amounts of vomiting (proving once and for all I really should chew my food more as well as eat less)…. there even came a point where the best option I could think of was to lie in a bed and shit myself…. except… it wasn’t happening.
When my system shuts down like this its like it just gets stoppered where my colon is encircled by the lymphoma and anything below that just carries on as normal and anything above gets thrown back up violently and painfully. Along with a good dose of the shakes as all my blood rushes to protect my internal organs.
(enough information yet)?
Eventually it started to calm down but they’d efinitely be keeping me in… Jane and the boy went home.
As the hospital was chocka and there were no beds on the wards to be had, the hospital kindly brought me a bed down to A&E (as opposed to a trolley which doesn’t count in their bed providing policy) and me the bed and a friendly commode sat in a small side room and waited until half eleven the next morning for a bed in Emergency Short Stay….
…and THAT’S how ill I felt… I didn’t complain about going to ESS at all.
Actually it was a bit like Waiting for Godot in there…. a ward with three old ladies, very old ladies. I’ve decided there are two main catagories of old ladies… happy ones and miserable ones. There was one of each on my ward, plus one so out of it it was hard to tell.
The miserable one spent her time doing three things…sleeping…eating and complaining to her family that she wasn’t sleeping and eating.
The happy one I would have brought home, even though she couldn’t toilet herself but they moved her to another ward before i could persuade her.
I hope I’m a happy old person.
At supper time I went mad and had two teaspoons of orange jelly before Jane and the boy visited and then I was asleep and seriously dribbling when a nurse came to tell me they had a bed up in Haem/Onc.
As you all know… I LOVE heam/onc.. there’s nothing like specialist staff to make you feel special and nothing like other cancer patients to know that whatever weird shit your body is throwing at you its fine ‘cos cancer’s a bitch.
The first thing heam/onc do when you arrive to set themselves apart from ESS is ask if you want another pillow…. some people even have three pillows. Two pillows and a working drip stand and I’m happy.
This morning my body took on board two slices of toast…. which were weird. Toasty… almost bread like and there was some warmth involved that actually melted butter. I think Mark that pushes the food trolley (I think he’s officially a ‘ward host’ -and one of THE most cheerful men on the planet) may have made some sort of step for toast and mankind in the storage of hospital toast… or if not him… someone.
And then my body decided what it likes best in the world isn’t vomiting but shitting.
(nothing to do with the toast…. just process)
As with any good organised hospital the registrar came round early morning and told me my problem was probable a chemo side effect (combined with being a silly sausage with my eating) and I’d be able to go home ‘sometime’ over the weekend.
shit. my weekend is all planned…Annie is coming to stay…we’re going to crochet and drink tea…and eat…erm… Annie is going to eat cake. Not me.
Luckily the registrar went away and came back as part of a posse along with my lovely consultant who agreed that having diarrhoea in your own toilet at home is a lot more pleasant than doing it anywhere else… so I could go home as soon as I had my letter and my canula out. (I was very careful to avoid eye contact with the registrar at this juncture in case they conferred).
Phone Jane for lift.
Canula out (about time as arm swelling – I think I’d hit saline drip saturation point).
And off home – asking them to stick the important discharge letter in the post.
~from: changeling times