Week 13

angel by your side

A very dear friend of mine for many years sent me this…..I said to Gael I think the angel by my side could be her mother who was the most gentle, loving, classy lady I had the good fortune to meet and to be accepted as part of her big family. My kids loved Jeannie and I learnt a lot about cooking, preserving fruits, onions (oh the tears!) making jams, chutneys and all other kinds of goodies she stored in her huge, warm, welcoming kitchen. Great memories.

Well since the last blog a fair bit has happened for me. Friday’s consultation was with Emma and it was nice to catch up with her again. She was thrilled with the results of my recent tests also. Oscar was topped up and both he and Eric were ready for disconnection on Saturday. My energy levels were still in a good place and I felt like doing something different from going back to the unit and watching TV or reading.

Tim decided we would go to a nearby shopping centre and if not too busy we could go for a wander. I have to avoid crowds where possible. The centre was so quiet I wondered if it was closing time….still mid afternoon and plenty of shopping hours yet. We bought a few things Tim needed, sunnies for me because my current ones are now too big for my face, Jane Green’s new book Falling, and a lotto….not sure if it won anything yet. Must get a registration done for us. The plan was to have lunch at the Coffee Club, usually a great place to eat a light, late lunch, but their kitchen was closed. Honestly, if they have a business that provides food, why close the kitchen hours before the restaurant closes?


We drove towards Bowen Hills where the unit is because there is another Coffee Club in Windsor….but we found this one opposite…Conti’s, and the food was incredibly fresh, tasty and of course in huge servings. Open day and night, BYO, and I highly recommend it. We enjoyed a wonderful lunch, excellent Earl Grey tea in a pot made perfectly, and cold cold water. Our table was actually there behind that Crown sign, where I had a bird’s eye view of passers by and cars. Heaven for a few hours.

On Sunday I was still feeling ok because the injections hadn’t begun as yet, and the steroids still had not worn off completely. Tim helped me walk to the nearby park where they light the trees up at night, and we sat on the garden seats in the sun, soaking up the quiet green of the park. A scruffy chap sat nearby eating his Macdonald’s and when he’d finished he got up leaving his rubbish on the seat….not good enough in Tim’s eyes, so he called him back to put it in the bin. The guy obviously was a little challenged mentally and told Tim he didn’t want to know who he was or he’d be sorry…..Prince Charles’ and Camilla’s love child perhaps? They say there is one living in Queensland.

charles and camilla

After our walk there, I still felt fit enough to explore the grounds of the units here…we had been told there was a pool but I’d never seen any sign of it. So we returned (the steps up to the hotel were tough!) and walked in the opposite direction to where we normally go and yay! found not only a pristine sparkling pool, but a gorgeous big gym as well…and a nice hunk of a young chap on the rowing machine. We chatted to him for a few minutes, then wandered back to our unit….by then my legs were feeling the stress of the walking and standing. All in all a great day though, in spite of having to spend the rest of the afternoon snoozing to recuperate.

Monday saw the energy levels decrease but not too badly this time. I think the potassium and magnesium tablets are helping…well they’d better be, they are huge and difficult to swallow! I decided to ring a few family members who always say they will ring and don’t, and always say they are ‘there’ for us…..and aren’t. I was pissed off to put it mildly but these days I have come to expect nothing and so I am not disappointed. I had a sleep and got over it. Sleep is the best medicine for someone out of sorts I find.

when life

Tuesday was hospital day and it was an early start. Sadly no blood could be taken from my PICC line and a few nurses tried to get some from veins in my right arm so that the tests could at least be done for Kirk. One of the attempts must have hit a nerve in the back of my hand near the base of my thumb and God it hurt! The pain was excruciating down my first finger and it was just too much for even me to cope with….she had to get that needle out of there fast, without any blood. Finally, after several jabs, a senior lady Pam who has a very casual but gentle air about her (and wears a very comforting perfume if you understand what I mean), came in to get the samples….in no time she had the samples, with no pain, no hassle and all smiles. I sighed with relief.


By the time I saw Kirk, covered in band aids, I could tell he was not pleased with the look. He asked why this was so….I explained the PICC wasn’t playing the game, so he sent me for an Xray on the 3rd floor, to see if it had moved inside my chest. Two lovely middle aged ladies were the radiographers and no waiting time spent for me…they were friendly and liked a chat about my scarf which I bought somewhere in Europe, and said they would transmit the images to Kirk immediately. True to their word, by the time we got to the Oncology Dept, he had seen the images and decided 1. the PICC was to be taken out immediately and replaced on Friday, and 2. I needed a shot of blood. I also had a reprieve of self injecting last night, but it’s back to them tonight.

Today I had a visit from the pest control guy…he’s originally from Gunnedah in NSW and we had a nice chat as I sat in the sun on the balcony. Very nice guy who told me about his mother being diagnosed with breast cancer years ago, only to be told no she didn’t have it after all but to give up her chain smoking….she did for 4 days. A few years later she was told she had throat cancer and another trip to Sydney found that no, she was clear but needed to give up chain smoking…she did for 4 days. Years later she was fed up with feeling ill etc and announced to the family she was giving up smoking. She did, but 4 days later she died of a stroke! How ironic is that?

Then the cleaning girl came and did her stuff round the place….made it reek of bleach. By then Tim was back from his client appointment on the Gold Coast and it was lunch. Still sunny here but cool…storms are expected tonight for the rest of the week.

Thursday (tomorrow) more blood tests….yikes! Then Friday I get my new PICC line fitted and another chat with Kirk. He has said that the next chemo dose will be a strong one to give it a good blast again. As long as it works, I don’t mind.

Friends are on the Sunshine Coast for a week, and I’m hoping the end of the week will see me fit enough to go catch up with them. A drive northwards would be nice, and Tim’s parents will meet us also to hand over mail, and of course the ever-so-important (NOT to me!) Census ID number.

I’m still undecided as to whether I will fill the details in or not. I have refused to take part in any Census since the 80s when I discovered my father’s 3rd and horrid wife had gleaned much information about my mother and her family from the so called private and secure Bureau of Stats…all Census information. I made the decision then that nobody in future generations would be able to find info about me ever again, so I have faded away into the corners, and hopefully they won’t realise I’m still around. At $180 a day fine, it could be costly.


So that’s me for another week or so. My energy levels are not as bad as previous weeks, but I find I get a tad more emotional lately….which can be annoying….for me.

Please send positive thoughts/prayers/hopes for my friends Sharleen and Arleta who are fighting their own battles right now, and for everyone who is not having an easy life at the moment for whatever reason. Including Brenda from Wales who has MS and got so upset recently she couldn’t speak for a day or two. Positivity…..It all helps believe me. I am sending positive thoughts out there in cyber space for the Olympic teams too…I think in that disgusting place they will need lots of help to avoid coming home ill with some dastardly disease.

whatever the question

Much love and big hugs to each and every one of my dear friends and family. I could not go on without your encouragement and support. Till next time.




10 thoughts on “Week 13

  1. ursula dewar. August 3, 2016 at 9:52 am Reply

    Hello Jo, You seem to have been doing quite a lot around that neighbor hood which is good to hear about. I pray all goes well with the next dose of medication and you will be able to have someone tell the same story about you as that fellow you chatted with was able to about his mother. Well I wont bore you too much and just ask Our Lady to be with you as always. God Bless and Prayers from me. XXXXX Gentle hugs too.

    • joskehan August 9, 2016 at 7:03 am Reply

      Well they won’t have the fun part in the story about me re the smoking. xxx

  2. Niamh Keany Pattison August 3, 2016 at 12:29 pm Reply

    All the best ..things seem to be progressing at a good rate so I hope your on the road to recovery and will be home soon. Molly says mieow and purrs too. x

    • joskehan August 9, 2016 at 7:01 am Reply

      Hello to you both Niamh and Molly…..lots of hugs. xxx

  3. Trevor Belshaw August 3, 2016 at 1:20 pm Reply

    Blimey! you’ve had a busier week than me. Sending lots of positive vibes. I’ve got some to spare. I actually finished my new book. First one in exactly a year. How’s that for consistency? All the best to you Jo, hope the new thingy fit goes well. Looking forward to you post chemo blogs.

    • joskehan August 9, 2016 at 7:01 am Reply

      I’ll have to get your new book Trevor…is it an ebook? Well done. Rome wasn’t built in a day! Hugs. xxx

  4. Gerri Bowen August 3, 2016 at 3:14 pm Reply

    Much love and big hugs to you too, Jo. Keep sparkling like you do. ❤

  5. Doreen August 4, 2016 at 11:16 pm Reply

    Hi Jo, good to know you felt able to get out and about a bit more than before. You’re at 13 weeks,my goodness a long and arduous 13 weeks. How resilient you are and patient too. I know the hospital staff will be doing all they can and you have to trust that they are. And there are improvements which is really good news. Now I know why they call sick people ‘patients’. Luv Tim’s attitude to those who are thoughtless and careless. We need more people like him around who speak up and I feel the same way too. Many have never had to tough it out with anything in their lives. It’s good that he’s there for you. Will also send luv hugs and healing to Sharleen, Brenda and Arletta as well as yourself. You are always in my thoughts and prayers for continued improvement and a return to good health. Take care.Doreen xxx

  6. joskehan August 9, 2016 at 6:59 am Reply

    Thank you so much Doreen. xxxx

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