Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Toxic Shock Syndrome...

As usual I'm slacking. I'm writing this while trying extremely hard not to look at the calendar on my laptop which might reveal just how many months it has been since I last visited this blog. Excuses ?  I have many. Three weeks of radiotherapy before a super swift jaunt to not just one, but two European countries to recover, I think might explain the reason why I've been so incommunicado throughout most of September.

Because you see, throughout most of August when most of you were enjoying the warm rays of summer sun, I have woken up at the crack of dawn, hauled my heavy, sleep saturated body into the shower and left the house at the speed of a doormouse. I have travelled to Harley Street, where I have got myself half-undressed, lain on an uncomfortable steel-framed bed and allowed radiation rays, better known as photons, to course their way through my body. I have then hauled myself up, still bleary-eyed to work, to sit in front of a computer all day and drink cappuccino. And to top it all, as much as I try to view radiation, you know that radioactive matter that people run away from during an atomic explosion or fall-out (see Japanese Tsunami in Wikipedia for more info) as curative, I am a child of the seventies. Radiation to me translates to CND (Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament for all you 20-somethings who missed this fine period of political history), it translates to Greenham Common women; long, flaxen-haired white women being forcibly carried out of fields by the Police, and lots and lots of t-shirts with that peace symbol. It never did, and certainly doesn't now, ever make me think of radiation as a 'treatment' as the doctors call it. But at the same time, I guess I should be grateful that there is still something to offer me.

But let's not get maudlin. After three swift ones (weeks I mean, not units of alcohol), I decided to treat myself and partner and toddler A to a trip to Mallorca, that most beautiful island in the Mediterranean. I had imagined myself for weeks sat in the sunshine with only a cocktail to distract me, watching the sun sparkle on the crystalline waters of the Mediterranean sea... I even brought along that book. Yes, that one. All fifty shades of it, as a way of raising two (or three depending on your sexual preferences) fingers to cancer as if to say, 'yes I still have a sex life you bastard, even if I'm a boob and sternum lighter as a result of your 'dropping in' on me'. Instead what I got was a trip with a toddler who suddenly learned how to throw the most hummungus of tantrums. Not just the odd cry and sniffle that I saw in his more well-behaved German counterparts. No, these ones demanded that we be in a public place, somewhere like a quiet, crowded restaurant was ideal. And they usually came around the time of  'la hora de comer' - or in plain english; lunchtime. Not the most relaxing way to enjoy your holiday but you know what they say, 'patience is a virtue'. And once you've spent the last two years on and off chemo, waiting desperately for the time when you won't have to take a medicine shelf full of drugs again, being able to wait patiently for your toddler to finish his excrutiatingly embarassing toddler tantrum so that you can carry on sipping red wine and eating olives on the terrace, suddenly begins to feel very tolerable indeed...


  1. Oh, the horror! ;-) Poor you. Oh well. We can't all be German.

  2. thanks Thandi - in fact, he wasn't all that bad - there were just moments of intense stress at times - but unfortunately those moments now really, really stand out in my mind : ) - still, at least it keeps the old adrenaline flowing ! Hugs, Cx