I'm now into the second cycle of this current chemotherapy and, so far, it has been a lot less problematic than I anticipated. I was really concerned that I'd be suffering from a lot of side effects on top of the symptoms that the cancer causes but this hasn't been the case.
When people ask me how I'm feeling I find myself answering them solely in terms of the chemotherapy side effects; I've come to view the cancer symptoms as something separate and often forget to refer to them although they are having quite an impact on my quality of life. For example, not only am I unable to walk more than a couple of hundred yards I am also unable to stand up for more than fifteen or twenty minutes at a time without developing severe abdominal and chest discomfort. This is very limiting, it has stopped me from doing most basic household chores and has also prevented me from cooking, something I was really enjoying a few weeks ago. My legs continue to get weaker and I get out of breath climbing stairs.
Over the past couple of weeks Katie and I have been to a number of medical appointments most with a view to tackling the cancer symptoms or to finding ways of coping better with the limitations they impose. I've hired a mobility scooter so that we can get into town and we've been looking this week for a reclining chair that will be more suitable for me than the sofa. I find it a little surreal to be discussing extra stair rails, hand rails for the shower and stair lifts with an occupational therapist although I can see that these are all things I may require soon if things continue as they are.
Katie and I continue to be amazed by the standard of care provided by the various specialist staff from the hospice. They don't just offer advice, they agree specific practical actions with us which they then take ownership of and make happen. I struggle to think of any other professional organisation that has consistently shown this level of proactivity and focus, it makes things as easy as they can be for Katie and I.
I've not been out with my camera in the last week, the weather hasn't been at all favourable. I've been looking back on some of the photo's from this summer and came across a couple taken from the visits we've made to various small harbours around the coast. Here are a couple of brightly painted boats in Folkestone harbour and some crab pots from Bridlington; we cooked ourselves a couple of great meals with crab and lobster that we bought from the harbour side.