Suddenly, my free wheeling retired life was put on hold and my life became one of doctor's appointments, blood tests and Chemotherapy sessions, The fact that I was unable to drive my car for a few months was one of the hardest things to come to terms with . However this lack of independence was short term and I was lucky to have a willing chauffeur in my husband, Brian.
Overall, I was extremely lucky. Apart from losing my hair and being very tired, I was fine. I made many discoveries of the various services available to people with illness and I realised that we live in a “lucky country” or at least, those of us living in this part of Victoria.
My Chemotherapy sessions were in Wangaratta and the staff there are wonderful. They are professional and caring. I felt I was part of a caring group and met some wonderful people. When trying to decide on the wig to wear, I was advised by my fellow sufferers and ended up becoming a red head for several months. I must admit that I was pleased that my wig wearing occurred in the cooler months as I imagine it would not be so pleasant in the heat of summer.
I was pleasantly surprised by the love and support I received, not just from my family but from friends and even people who I hardly knew who reached out to me. Of course, there was the occasional disappointment with a few people I thought were close friends, but I understand some people find it hard to deal with illness.
After five months I was given a scan which showed the cancer had disappeared but as a extra precaution I was scheduled for two lots of treatment in hospital in Albury. This is thought to protect the brain. I hope it worked because I do not want to do that again – hospitals are not my favourite place.
However after two years I am still in remission and have graduated to six monthly Oncology appointments whereas up to now they were 3 monthly.
Yes, this definitely was a curved ball, but in some ways I am grateful it happened as I am more aware of other people. I also gained a greater appreciation of my family and the fortunate life I have and continue to live.
Hopefully I continue to enjoy good health and always.
'Carpe Diem ...'