Tuesday, 27 December 2016

Switching Base

It was a very difficult decision to make, logistically very challenging to pull, but in the end, I needed to switch base. I’m at a very critical time in my Cancer, whatever I do from here on in will impact my life. We moved back to Vancouver Canada from London England a little over a month ago. I had chemo waiting there for me at NHS, but that was the only option they gave me. I switched base so I can explore what the BC Cancer Agency has on offer. I know it’s not much either as according to my records, I’m towards the end stage where aggressive chemo and radiation is there answer. There are alternative treatments I plan to pursue and I hope to get there. The 10 hour flight did take a lot from me, in fact I’m still slowly recovering. I don’t know my own strength anymore, I thought all I needed to recover is a weekend, was I so wrong! I have been in and out of hospitals since landing, the 5 day stint at the palliative unit was torturous, and mentally devastating. I hit one of the dippest lows in this journey where I started to give in to the worst scenarios, some images fleeting on my mind. It was a very dark time, as I lay unbelievably weak at the hospital. With all the strength I could possible muster, I tried hard to meditate, talk to my cells and beg them to cooperate with me. It doesn’t help that they’ve put me on mind altering heavy narcotics as well, but I need it, the pain is unbearable that I ask “how is this pain even possible to exist”? The last thing I want to do is to be on these drugs but I have no choice, I don’t think anyone would have the choice given the pain. My oxygen is on almost 80% of the day and I can't go anywhere without my wheelchair again, I hate losing my independence!

I was admitted to the palliative care unit for further diagnostics and help me cope with the pain. I got so unwell there that I started to question the drastic change of meds I was being given. I settled after a few days, but only just, I can barely breathe and at this point having 1-2 hour coughing fits that bring out clear mucus, it is so uncomfortable, painful, and really scary when I’m unable to bring it out. This is the part of day I dread so much. On bad days I can get as much as 4 fits but at least once for sure, I don’t get a break. The bone scan confirmed metastasis on the lower ribs, lower spine, and left pelvic bone, in addition they also found lesions on more lymph nodes and both breasts. They assured me I will have that bed for as long a I want and they suggested I stay. For what? To lie in bed, being fed meds, and do nothing but wait? It’s so ridiculous I asked for a discharge.  They are instead sending a nurse to see me at home whenever I need it, much appreciated.

It was off to the BC Cancer Agency the day after discharge at palliative, got back from Palliative around 9 pm and had to be at BC Cancer for 9am! I was offered radiotherapy to control the bone pain, I took it. That night I really felt I was buzzing, I told my husband, I’m turning into a radioactive super hero or villain! It was nothing like I’ve experienced before, no doubt. I felt a burst of energy the next day but they told me that is the only radiotherapy treatment I am allowed to have. We will definitely sit down and talk options again.

I'm very slowly getting settled in my routine, as with every move, it takes time, more so in my condition. Its always been said, moving and dealing with death are the two most stressful times in anyone’s life, how am I getting them both!
If theres one thing that is definitely an advantage being back in Canada is getting access to real medicine, cannabis oil. I finally got the real deal, the Rick Simpson Formula. Talking about alternative treatments in not taboo here too, they are more open to listening about my choices, which is good. The dietician was knowledgable, it’s not just Ensure they offered. It was a very helpful meeting.

I don’t know what the near future holds for me. It was a very brave and bold move but I made it, thus far. Christmas was what is should be – Christmas! It was so good to be with family. Even though I struggled to breathe through it all, It was a very Happy Christmas!

You don't always need a plan. Sometimes you justneed to breathe, trust, and let go and see what happens.

Things work out best for those who make the best of how things work out.