Wednesday, 11 November 2015

Two Steps Forward, One Step Back

A somewhat frustrating day, but I have managed to achieve quite a bit today!

There have been some more firsts over the last couple of days: yesterday I did my first online grocery shop, and today it was delivered. It was a big shop, because my larder was fairly depleted, and I also needed new ingredients for the recipes I am keen to try. Yesterday I cleaned out the fridge freezer - very glad to have done this before the grocery delivery. It is all looking sparkly and clean now!

After putting the stuff away from the delivery, I suddenly realised that all this activity was starting to catch up with me, and I ran out of energy and had to rest. My idea of cooking supper bit the dust, and my hubby was back in the kitchen again... He is very good, and willing to take over when the need arises, I am glad to say. A bit frustrating, though. I am still very limited by my small reserves of energy. I so want to run before I can walk, and need to remember that I still have M.E. and will still suffer from “post-exertional malaise” – when the consequences of doing too much catch up with one, but the payback is delayed by a day or more. I have certainly been very busy over the past few days, trying to get the kitchen straight before my first online grocery shop.

I am already experiencing the problem of “too many cooks spoil the broth” – for the meal he prepared, my hubby used some curry sauce I bought today, that I was planning to use it for something else! This transitional period, when we are both cooking, is bound to be problematic, and certainly more difficult than when he was doing all the cooking and shopping. It’s going to be hard to keep track of exactly what I’ve got in the larder and planning the meals, and he may be called upon to do the odd bit of shopping until I can get straight.

While all this is going on, I still have several upcoming hospital appointments:

Thurs. 12th Nov. (tomorrow): Pre-assessment for my procedure next week.

Tues. 17th Nov.: Appointment with the support garments lady in the stoma clinic.

Wed. 18th Nov.: Investigation of what is left of my rear end under general anaesthetic, by my surgeon, Mr. Pullan, in the Day Surgery Unit. His registrar was unable to make a thorough investigation at the end of October because it was too uncomfortable, and it required more time than he had.

Thurs. 19th Nov.: CT scan, to see if there is any evidence of cancer still in my body.

Fri. 27th Nov.: Bloods and port flush on the Ricky Grant (chemo) Day Unit.

Mon. 30th Nov.: Oncology appointment, when I am hoping to get the cancer all-clear!

I had two letters from the appointments clerk at the hospital today, one relating to my pre-assessment appointment tomorrow, and the other to the procedure itself, together with a leaflet detailing what to expect and how to prepare.

Yesterday I counted up just how many appointments I've had at the hospital, and not counting my stay in hospital for my surgery, it has so far been 43! Add on the ones to come that I know about and it's 49! I have spent a great deal of time there, and my hubby has driven me there every time, and been so supportive throughout.

Now the kitchen is sorted, I am hoping to be able to start cooking in earnest, and also to be able to get back to being creative in the studio again, but with all these hospital visits, I’m not sure how long it will be before I’m in a more relaxed and manageable routine again. I just have to learn to pace myself and not expect too much before I’m ready. Having felt so much better, and then having a bit of a crash this afternoon, this is very hard. I’m still far from where I need to be, and it’s going to take time. It’s all about getting the balance right between activity and rest, and not getting frustrated, and I’m not very good at this! You’d think after living with M.E. for 8 years that I’d have pacing down to a fine art, and before the cancer, I was managing it pretty well, but this has upset the balance and now I’m in the recovery period, it’s a whole new learning curve and I feel like a novice again.


  1. Thanks for the update, Shoshi. I hope your appointments all go well, and I also hope your energy will come back and you be able to do some cooking AND some crafting.

  2. Learning to pace ourselves is not easy, trying to do it while battling illness is even harder. It sounds as though you're doing a good job; it takes practice, and you're learning what you need to be aware of. I think you're doing wonderfully well, and am sending you healing thoughts!

  3. I think we're all tempted to overdo things when we feel good!I'm sorry your flurry of activity wiped you out for a bit. I can understand you wanting to spoil hubby after all the support he offers you, but.. little steps best I suppose. looking forward to seeing more cards.So glad you can escape into your wonderful studio- purpose built! You deserve it after all you've been thru over the past few years.
    Judy .

  4. Going to the doctor when you have cancer is at the minimum a part-time job! I was diagnosed in September but the ball really got rolling in October … so even though I’m four years out, I took that part-time job on again for all my checkups last month. :) It DOES get better, I promise. And you will get your energy back, just remember to be patient with yourself. Rome wasn’t built in a day (I say this while laughing, because I went through the same thing!).

  5. Oh dear, that's nearly 50 appointments! I had just one back in the summer to check my fibroids and I was making a big deal out of it. So good, you're at the end of this now, Shoshi, and your hubby deserves a giant big medal! Keeping my fingers crossed for the 30th! Take it easy in the kitchen - that level of activity would tire anybody out! Thanks so much for your lovely comment yesterday. I'm taking my son to the doctors tomorrow - hopefully, there's nothing to worry about. He had another dizzy spell yesterday, but thankfully he seems OK now. I kept him home today just to keep an eye on him, though. I'll let him go to school tomorrow unless something happens again - his appointment is not until later in the day. I don't want him to lose too much school time. Hope your pre-assessment went well today!

  6. Recovery does take its own time, much to our chagrin. I'm wishing you the best outcome for all of the upcoming appointments, and in particular the one on November 30.
    Shoshi, you had mentioned that you would like to get warped cutting mats back in service. My hubby managed to do it ! He used a dry iron on a low setting and ironed on the back side of the Silver Bullet mat over a sheet of parchment paper. It took about five minutes to get a nice flat mat again. He saved my sanity because the mat warped in the middle of a busy card-making time, and I have to order from the US, so there is a wait time. I have a new mat now, but the one hubby fixed is still going great. It can be done. :)
    Take care and keep feeling better.

  7. Oh my goodness, I had no idea you still had so much stuff going on and so many appointments. I was glad to read that you have been reclaiming your role in the kitchen, although hubby sounds an absolute treasure stepping in when needed. I hope you regain your strength soon and get back to starting to run your home, and I also hope the procedure and scan goes well next week. Good luck, I shall be thinking of you and sending a little prayer your way.

  8. Lovely to hear of you getting organised but being aware of having to pace yourself. What a lovely hubby you have!

  9. Hi Shoshi, take care both of you. Things can only get better. Sending big hugs, Angela xXx

  10. Hope that the appointment goes ok today. Never nice having to have a GA. Get plenty of rest afterwards. Hubby, in particular (who has never had a GA), always under estimates how much it takes out of you - and how long it takes to recover. It is one of the rare times when I completely rest and sleep in the day. I mainly use online shopping now. I do enjoy an occasional walk around a supermarket, but I have to rest for at least a day afterwards. Now that a nice man from Tesco brings me lots of boxes of food/drink, it has really made things easier. Ali x

  11. Thank you Shoshi for your visits and heartwarming comments on my last two posts. I was really happy to see you because I was a bit concerned that you haven't posted on your blog for a while. Of course, it is totally understandable following such a busy week with appointments and procedures you had to endure. I'm glad to hear that everything is moving in the right direction, even if you're feeling a bit weak at the moment. Take care and rest well so you can get back into your studio soon xx

  12. Fingers crossed for the all clear on Monday, Shoshi! Enjoy your creative cooking for now, the rest will follow! Thanks for visiting earlier. xx

  13. What a journey you have been on..... it's wonderful that you are feeling well to want to begin the activities once again..... even if it must be in stages!!! You go my friend....can't wait to hear you creating in your studio again!!


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