Saturday, 19 April 2014

Good news all round!

I'm here again!  with an update on this week.

On Tuesday we took Honey to the specialist vet to have blood tests.  He was happy with her overall condition and although she weighs the same as she did last month he said that weigh gain will be a steady and gradual process over a longer period of time.  He took blood and rang with the results on Thursday.  The steroids are still making the liver enzyme results drop which is good news and they are now down to three times normal and last time they were four times.  Another check up and blood taking in six weeks.

We had a long day on Wednesday.  After dropping Ethan at my parents and travelling to Addenbrookes we then had an hour and a half wait because the Consultant was running behind.  We did however come out with the result Paul is happiest with.  They will repeat the HALO operation he had in October last year.  His condition 'down there' isn't as bad as it was then so hopefully it will be successful this time round.  As he is having an op we then had to go to pre-assessment and then to blood testing.  We left the car park at Addenbrookes about four hours after arriving.  We then went to do a bit of shopping (just in the Asda there) and didn't arrive home til about 5pm.  It felt like a long day.  

The big day then arrived.  After three months we were going back to Papworth for chest x-ray and to see the Oncologist.  They are resurfacing one of the roads we usually go on so we had to go a long way round meaning we left earlier as we weren't too sure how long it would take.  We were at Papworth slightly early but went in and got the x-ray done.  We were called earlier than our appointment time, which was great.  We saw Dr Gilligan and Claire, our Specialist Nurse.  Dr Gilligan said he had compared x-rays, this times to January's and also to the one they had from last July and he was very happy and that coupled with how Paul is feeling means it is good news all round.  We now have another three months before going back.  HORRAY!

After passing on the news to those that were waiting we went on the Park and Ride into Cambridge.  We did some shopping and had a celebratory lunch out.  Another long day!

Yesterday we just rested and relaxed and caught up with stuff at home and everyone had a nap!

Now we have our first holiday of the year to look forward to in just over a week.  We can now also book a holiday for June/July time, although we need to decide where to go first! 

Monday, 14 April 2014

Long time, no blog!

Every time I write a blog I decide that I must do it more often!  I looked today to see when I last wrote and it was the end of January, nearly three months ago!  Where that three months has gone I do not know, I really must write more often (here's hoping)!

So what has happened in the last three months, well quite a lot.......and here we are, by the end of the week we will know again if Paul's Mesothelioma is stable or not!

At the end of February Paul decided that work for him was getting too much, mentally and physically.  He is not the same person he was before diagnosis and life has changed, priorities have changed.  After much thought and consultation with medical professionals he decided that handing in his notice at work was the right thing to do.  He finished work the week after making the decision and immediately felt a weight had lifted.  Having said that last week he went back for a day and a half to help out and he is there today.

Around the same time I mentioned to Paul that Mesothelioma UK in March do something called Moustaches for Meso in March to raise funds.  Paul decided that it was something he could do and it would be great to raise awareness and funds for them.  He succeeded with the challenge and raised almost £600 (including gift aid) which is fantastic.  He was in our local paper and the Nursery our son, Ethan attends saw it.  They are doing a sponsored garden obstacle course later this month with the children, also to raise funds for Mesothelioma UK.  This will be great as it will raise awareness amongst the children's parents and hopefully their wider families also. To sponsor Ethan (who is just 3 years old) please visit Thank you :)

As Paul finished work at the end of February he was able to attend our nearest Mesothelioma Support Group which he thoroughly enjoyed and met lots of other fellow patients.  Last Friday all three of us attended and it is lovely to actually physically meet people that are also following the same path as us.  As the majority of Mesothelioma sufferers are a lot older that Paul it is great to feel that we can help out and make it known that this is now not just an 'old man's disease' it can and does effect the young.

We had good news at the vet.  Our cat was diagnosed with Inflammatory Bowel Disease but since being on steroids her condition has improved.  We have blood tests for her tomorrow to check her progress.

This week is busy with hospital appointments.  Paul's operation at the end of October 2013 was not fully successful and he has become anaemic again!  We never received his check up appointment which I had to chase to get at the beginning of the year, only for it to be cancelled and moved into May.  Once Paul was found to be anaemic again I rang and they were able to move it to this week.  Despite our GP faxing the hospital about 4 weeks ago now to ask for a more urgent appointment nothing has been done about it.  So Wednesday is his appointment at Addenbrookes to see what they have to say.  I will also be finding out how I can put in feedback on the above, as I really feel it is not good enough!  We have never even had a call to say they were unable to provide a sooner appointment.  This and our experience through chemo really makes me feel that unless patients at Addenbrookes have someone to fight their corner and check stuff is getting done correctly, nothing really does.

The 4th April was a year since Paul's final chemo session and 18 months since diagnosis.  This Thursday we will return to Papworth for Paul is have an x-ray and see his oncologist (or one of his registrars).  He says he feels the same as he did in January and visibly unless you know he has terminal cancer you would never ever guess.  Let's hope we get good news and another three months hospital visit free (well, at least for cancer appointments anyway)!