4 Feb 2013

Give me PEAS!!!

For some reason this session of the toxic nasties was way worse for me than the last. Without bigging myself up too much, I thought I handled the first round pretty well. I mean, I felt really rubbish for about 5 days but I still managed a few walks, had a few visitors and I had gradually returned to a fairly normal state by the end of week 2, which then gave me almost a whole week of feeling 'ok'. This time however has been different. I didn't know what feeling rubbish truly meant until Tuesday night. I won't bore you all with descriptions of my varying symptoms but last time seems like a walk in the park in comparison. 

I am trying really hard not to be disappointed in how my body is coping after batch 2, but it really is letting me down. I haven't been on one walk. I've barely paid attention to one movie and I haven't even put make up on once (which means things really must be bad). Madre has had to hold me down whilst she slathers my face and hands in moisturiser because I am feeling too rubbish to care but she can see my skin flaking away before her very eyes. I have also had delirious moments where I have seen an imaginary visitor sitting on my bed (I even asked Madre to move out of their way). I then had the actual nerve to actively refuse any normal visitors because I couldn't even be bothered to talk (yes Daddy this is astonishing, I know). It's been a real weird week...

I have had all manner of food cravings, most of them I am convinced are because my body needed a nutrient that was in them. For example I have craved tomatoes, avocado, salmon and broccoli. To top it all I haven't gone one day without peas since last Tuesday. I honestly cannot have dinner without them. Worrying I know. My favourite moment so far was when I truly believed I couldn't survive on Sunday night if I didn't have pear crumble. All I wanted was hot pears and I didn't let Madre forget it! Don't worry she delivered and it was delicious. I have since learnt that you could feed me a meal of peas, broccoli and potatoes and I would be happy for life. 

Apart from Madre and her magical nursing skills there is one other thing that has made a massive difference to this otherwise pretty rubbish week... A WHOLE BUNCH OF WONDERFUL PRESENTS AND CARDS. Honestly, I have been flabbergasted by everyones continued kindness and generosity. Almost everyday this week Madre has trotted into my bedroom brandishing a card or parcel for me to open. Each and everyone of them has made my facial expression turn from a painful grimace into a smile (albeit if only for a moment) and also I think provided Madre with a glimmer of hope that I am still human and have not in fact evolved into a chemobot (chemo induced robot). I got an amazing personalised onesie (photo to follow), a beautiful bobble hat, a jumper, some flowers and this AMAZING photo book of memories and well wishes (which almost made me shed a tear, I say almost because for those of you who know me well, this is a feat in itself as I am no big crier). Honestly, I am not expecting to be treated like this after every cycle but by golly does it do wonders to help lift a girl's spirit! So THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!! 

I am going to do a full post about my advice for chemo once I have finished all my rounds and I know I cannot claim to be an expert but this is my advice so far...

Listen to your body and if you won't do that then at least listen to your mummy (or other nominated carer). 
You may not want to drink water, or eat an oat cake at 7am because you need to take a tablet with food but you have to nonetheless. Your skin may be flaking away and you may not care but it will love you a whole bunch if you moisturise it! Even better if you can convince someone else to do it for you. Note to self, Madre does a mean hand massage! Sometimes mother really does know best! 

Have a fun event planned each week to look forward to
For example I am REALLY looking forward to going out for lunch with Snoop Doggy Rob on Wednesday! (Mainly because I think we are going somewhere I can eat mushy peas and also I have been promised a healthy homemade banana loaf from Jane!).

Don't forget to smile. 
It's hard to smile all the time I know and trust me I haven't been all smiles this week by any means, however, when I did manage a smile it helped both me and whoever was around me to cope just a little better. Even if I was only smiling because Madre bribed me with promise of some peas for tea and a cuddle before bed!

Love you long time. X


  1. Dorrie Imeson5.2.13

    Dear Laura,

    I have just stumbled across your blog after it came up on my twitter feed as Alexa Chung had re-tweeted it. It's really great to read and you really are very inspiring. I am a medical student at manchester uni and currently writing a mini dissertation on how people use blogs/fb/twitter to tell stories of their health. I am also looking at how telling our story is helpful physically and psychologically. If you had any pointers for me i.e. why you've taken to blogging, how you've found it helpful? Any drawbacks you've experienced I would be really grateful. No worries if you don't get the chance and good luck with everything and keep up the writing! Dorrie x

  2. Hi Laura,

    You should be proud of yourself, what an incredible thing to do in your situation. :)
    All the best darling xx

  3. Hey Laura,

    You are being an incredibly strong and courageous woman by working on this blog, as you will inspire many other women. Keep your head up girl, and I'm praying for you :).

  4. PEAS ARE MY ALL TIME FAVE! It's not a funny line but its a start... Miss you beautiful xxxx

  5. Danny8.2.13

    All the best mate! It won't last for ever - you'll be out and about again soon. :)

  6. sopranoone11.10.13

    Truly Amazing

  7. Solange11.10.13

    I came upon your blog from an article in the Daily Mail. What a wonderful attitude you have. It's an amazing inspiration to others. May you have a long, healthy, happy and fabulous future in full good health.

  8. Debbie GG11.10.13

    Hi Laura, I was diagnosed with breast cancer following the August bank holiday weekend (rotten timing as no doctors around, so spent the weekend panicking!) and I started my second round of chemo cycle this morning. My Dad noticed the article about your blog in Femail and I've started to read it. Coincidently, my family had a fantastic holiday for a week in Salcombe this July. We love it there, it's a wonderful place. I have just had to cancel our reservation for next year as I will be having my operation/radiotherapy then, which is heart-breaking. Laura, thanks for your inspiration and I might do my own blog when I feel up to it. I crave porridge rather than peas!! The "P" team perhaps? My "pee" is currently the required pink from the FEC-T drugs, very fetching. I'm a 41 year old Mum to one son (8½) and my wonderful partner of 7 years and me stopped faffing about and he proposed and we got married within 5 days of diagnosis!! It was one of those very special bitter/sweet days, but luckily we missed the dreaded Friday 13th 2013 and did it on the 14th Sept, thankfully! What is quite funny is that we don't yet live together, so I have to kick my hubby back to his own house at the end of an evening - unconventional!! We're viewing a house tomorrow though, so hopefully we won't be apart for much longer. I've been a full-time student for the past 4 years - I'm training to become a counselling psychologist (my own best customer now, hey?!) and have another two years to complete my qualification. I'm gutted that this puts my dream on hold for at least the next year and I so miss my course colleagues (but not the workload, let's be clear!) and clients so much. Although I'm nearly twice your age (worst luck), I'm often around younger people (mainly 8 year olds or students) and feel ridiculously young to give up on my looks (I am shocked at how seriously vain I really am, so your fashion advice is fab), or lose my optimism and zest for life just yet. I still feel like a twenty year old and don't behave too much better at times ;-) My hair was cropped very short on Tuesday after growing it for the past two years to please my niece. I wanted it and me to look nice for our wedding, hence the haste. Unfortunately the cold cap treatment didn't work and it's coming out fast. I have a lovely wig sorted but refuse to wear it until I absolutely have no choice! I am currently looking like a bad version of Julian Clary, but haven't mastered the voice yet. I am so lucky as (like you) I have an amazingly supportive and thankfully local family and friends who are showering me with gifts, love and practical support. I realise that you are drowning in responses after making the headlines, so I'm not expecting you to reply to me. Congratulations on everything you have achieved. I'd like to join you when I'm well enough in raising funds for all types of cancer research and have some ideas..Friends at my son's school are busy right now raising money for breast cancer. Anyway, feeling exhausted and need to get to bed - you know only too well how the drugs hit you straight after a new cycle. It's the yukky metallic taste that gets on my wick, plus feeling like you've downed two glasses of vino without the fun party bit. Bummer! Very best of luck for you and your family. Take care. Debbie Glasper-Green from Guildford, Surrey. p.s. You know your life has gone topsy turvy and you're not looking good when you're 70 year Dad who has zero fashion sense sends you a link about how to look better!!!! Scarier than the cancer...almost. xxxx

  9. Anonymous14.10.13


  10. Anonymous14.10.13

    Hi my name is Anastasia. I am Greek. I am 42 years old. I am not married. I am not a mother. I admire you. I have uterine cancer and surgically treated with hysterectomy in 2011. Since then I'm in the chemotherapy drugs. I do not know how long i can stand. I admire you greatly. I wish I was as strong as you. I wish God to fill you eternal happiness.