Archive for November 2017

Me & Mine - November 2017

Thursday, 30 November 2017

Joining up with the Me and Mine Family Portrait Project with these photos of our family for November.


Our first festive photo of 2017 when we met Father Christmas at a local Christmas Fair. Master R isn't quite sure yet what to make of the man in red!


This one with The Gruffalo was taken at the start of the month by my brother on a lovely walk in Delamere Forest. We didn't realise Miss A was pulling a funny face until we looked back later! She's so cheeky!

November Highs:
  • - A big highlight of this month was seeing some of my family and us all staying in a house for the weekend together. My brother, sister-in-law, niece and her boyfriend came up to Chester and we had such a fab time catching up.
  • - The month began with the rest of half term. We visited the World Museum in Liverpool with Mr MoaB's sister and her kids. It's been a long time since we've been to a Museum. Wasn't sure how Master R would be as he wasn't that well all week but he actually seemed to enjoy running around the place! Bit disappointed by the Planetarium Show but other than that we had a great day exploring all the different exhibits. 
  • - Miss A got to try roller skating for the first time at a free local Roller Disco and Laser Light Display event. She got the hang of it really quickly and it's definitely something I'd like to do again with her. The laser light display was fun too!
  • - Another first this month for Miss A was going to a fireworks display. Previously we've just watched a few fireworks from the window, but this year I took her with my brother and sister-in-law to a local display. I was a bit worried she might not like the noise but she loved it! 
  • - Whilst my family were up we went for a wander around Chester including the Cathedral and walking round part of the walls. It's such a nice town to be able to take people to.
  • - Miss A went to her school disco with lots of dancing and some party games. I was helping at the event and must admit the noise level was so high but the kids all had a great time!
  • - Mr MoaB's Mum came to stay for a few days and we took Master R to Grosvenor Garden Centre to see the Christmas decorations. The had some singing reindeer heads which were great fun. Lost count of the number of times we watched them! 
  • - Both the kids supported Children in Need - Miss A had a Silly Hat Day at school and Master R wore fancy dress to nursery. 
  • - Mr MoaB and I have finally got around to making some firm plans for our wedding (we've been engaged since 2012). We've now booked our wedding venue and the Registrars. So we're all set for September 2018!
  • - As part of the Frodsham Christmas Festival, Miss A got to ride on the school float which was themed on 'When Santa Got Stuck in the Chimney'. She sings the song all the time now!
  • - Miss A achieved her next level of badge at her Gym Stars gymnastics class. 
  • - Master R's vocabulary seems to have come on leaps and bounds over the last few weeks. He has so many more words and is trying to say lots more. It's so fab to hear. 


November Lows:
  • - My third stay in hospital of the year. This time due to a chest infection. Thankfully it wasn't sepsis. Meant that my treatment had to be delayed by a week but when I had it, it all went fine. 
  • - I still have so many blots posts unwritten and in drafts. I am struggling to know where to start to get the blog up-to-date but my plan is to try get them all written so that my blog stays as a record for the kids to look back on. 

The Me + Mine Project - Dear Beautiful

share this on »
Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
Add a comment »

My Sunday Photo 26-11-2017

Sunday, 26 November 2017

This is my favourite picture of this week for #MySundayPhoto.


A magical moment for Miss A as she encountered a Unicorn at the Frodsham Christmas Festival last night!

OneDad3Girls

share this on »
Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
2 Comments »

Living with Cancer - A Year of Treatment

Thursday, 23 November 2017

A year ago today I had my first chemo treatment so I thought it was an appropriate time to give a bit of an update on what's happening with me as I continue to fight cancer.


I originally went public with diagnosis back in February and you can read more about this in my original Living with Cancer post.

I don't remember a lot about the weeks leading up to my first treatment. It was just a whirlwind of appointments and scans and we were just trying to come to terms with the diagnosis.

My treatment journey started at the Cancer Centre at Stoke Mandeville Hospital in Aylesbury. I just had time for one round of treatment before we made the big family move up from Bucks to Cheshire. We had to time our move around my treatment dates.

Then once we'd moved, it was another series of appointments at the Clatterbridge Cancer Centre in the Wirral including meeting my new oncologist. I was found to be HER2+ so my treatment plan was changed and I had my first round Christmas week. Not great timing and I was pretty wiped out over the Christmas period. The day of my first treatment was when the ward were all dressed up for Christmas so at least this took my mind off things.

I also took the decision to have my hair shaved off on Christmas Eve. It was coming out in great clumps and I was getting more and more upset every time I showered. We took the kids along to a local barbers and I think this helped Miss A to accept that Mummy had no hair as she saw it coming off. We tried to make light of it hence the plate photos etc. I decided on a barbers as I didn't feel I could go into a hairdressers when everyone in there would be getting primped and preened ready for Christmas. This would have been more upsetting. I got used to wearing hats whenever I went out and luckily it was through the winter so I didn't look too out of place.

My treatment has been every 3 weeks with a few exceptions when it's been delayed. I had 7 rounds of this chemo treatment over a 4 month period. I was very fortunate as I got through most of it pretty unscathed with only a few side effects, mostly fatigue. I know from others, that this is definitely not the case and side effects can knock people out completely. I did end up in hospital on two occasions with neutropenic sepsis. Luckily both times I was only in for 2 nights as the hardest part was being away from the kids.

We were so fortunate that for every treatment, we had family members on hand who came and looked after the kids so that Mr MoaB could accompany me on my treatment days. They are long tiring days even though it's mostly a lot of waiting around in between getting bloods done, seeing the oncologist and then having the treatment itself. A massive thankyou to each of them for their support.

Next door to the Cancer Centre is a Maggie's Centre and this has always provided a welcome haven on the long days. There's always a friendly smile awaiting and free refreshments including an endless supply of biscuits. It's nice to have somewhere relaxing to go away from the waiting room of the Cancer Centre.

At the end of my chemo treatment in April, I rang the bell at the Cancer Centre. Even though I knew my treatment was ongoing, it felt important to mark this milestone and I got more emotional than I thought I would.

I was to continue on a 3-weekly treatment plan of Herceptin and Pertuzumab indefinitely from this point. I started to go to the Cancer Centre on my own so that Mr MoaB could look after the kids.

Originally I had a PICC line inserted for my treatment but then I became allergic to the dressings that were applied so it had to be removed. It was great for treatment so I didn't have to have a cannula each time but it was a bit of a pain as you had to keep it dry when in the shower with a big cover, I couldn't go swimming with the kids and it had to be flushed and re-dressed every week between treatment by the district nurses. I opted to have Portacath inserted in my arm instead which sits under the skin and means I can go swimming etc. It's brilliant.

My Breast Cancer Nurse had nominated us for a Special Day through the Willow Foundation. This fantastic charity offer special days to seriously ill young adults. We asked to go on a family holiday to Center Parcs and they made all the arrangements for us to spend 4 nights at Sherwood Forest in June. It was just what we needed after everything we'd been through over the preceding year. We had the perfect weather and enjoyed some amazing family time together.


We enjoyed a great summer and I made sure I made the most of the time with Miss A before she started school in September. I actually felt really good and was definitely managing okay on my new regime of drugs. However, my body had other ideas and I was told at the end of August that I would need more chemo. This time a drug called Kadcyla. It came as a complete blow as I thought the other drugs must be working as I felt so well. But so be it. I have now had 4 rounds of this drug and again seem to be getting away with very few side effects (touch wood this continues).

Fortunately I shouldn't lose my hair this time which is good as it's growing back nicely. When I tell people about my cancer for the first time, they are always shocked as you really wouldn't have any idea from the outside! That's a good thing. I obviously never look that ill even on my off days!

I have found a great support network with the Younger Breast Cancer Network. They have various groups depending on your diagnosis and location in the country. It's always nice to know I can go on their to chat or ask questions with those going through what we are. It can be hard to read some posts but that's the reality of this disease. There are so many young women who have cancer and many who like me have young kids. We need to keep fighting.

Throughout this whole time, it is the kids who have helped me stay focused and not mull on it all. I just have to get up everyday and be Mum for them. Master R is still too young to understand any of it and Miss A just knows that Mummy goes to hospital every few weeks and has an 'ouchy' in her arm but it it doesn't impact her day to day and I hope that continues for a long time to come.

And of course I couldn't have got through all of this without the unfailing support of close friends and family, but mostly Mr MoaB. It's tough and it will continue to be so, but we have our wedding booked now for next year so we have something to focus on and look forward to next year. Thank you Mr MoaB.

So that's where we're at. It's been quite a year. It's hard thinking back but I wanted to record my journey for the kids to read in the future. I have one more treatment this year and then fortunately my next treatment won't be until 9th January so I can enjoy the festive period and Miss A's school holidays without any stress or side effects. Yeay!



share this on »
Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
Add a comment »

My Sunday Photo 19-11-2017

Sunday, 19 November 2017

This is my favourite picture of this week for #MySundayPhoto.


The first of what I'm sure will be many Christmassy photos! I took Master R to a local Garden Centre with Mr MoaB's Mum to see their decorations. He loved all the displays especially the singing reindeer!




OneDad3Girls

share this on »
Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
4 Comments »

Siblings - November 2017

Thursday, 16 November 2017

Joining up with The Siblings Project with these photos of Miss A and Master R. Another mixed bag of images this month.


This is my favourite picture of them from the last month. It was taken on the night of Miss A's Rock Concert at school. She looked fab all dressed up and Master R wanted to get in on the action. It was a really fantastic concert and the kids all sang really well.




A whole series of different photos taken on various days in the build-up to Halloween. It is fun dressing them up although Master R isn't that keen on the outfits! I tried so many times to get a good one of them in costumes but failed each time! Oh well, these are the best of a bad bunch. There's always next year. We did have fun doing lots of different activities both at home and at Halloween events. Master R was poorly on the day itself and stayed off nursery so missed their Halloween party which was a shame. Miss A was on half term so I took her to a Halloween event as we don't get trick or treaters in the road where we live. 

Finally, there's this picture that is incredibly blurred but Mr MoaB took it of the kids blowing me a kiss. It's special because it was sent to me whilst I was in hospital with a chest infection. It was so nice to receive this. I missed them massively. Thankfully I was only in for 2 nights and it was so lovely to be reunited with them. They were both so good for their Daddy whilst I was away and I'm so proud of how they dealt the situation. They're so resilient.


The Siblings Project - Dear Beautiful

share this on »
Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
2 Comments »

My Sunday Photo 12-11-2017

This is my favourite picture of this week for #MySundayPhoto.


This was taken on Monday. It was so cute when Master R lay down next to my brother and sister-in-law's dog.



OneDad3Girls

share this on »
Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
Add a comment »

My Sunday Photo 05-11-2017

Sunday, 5 November 2017

This is my favourite picture of this week for #MySundayPhoto.


Taken on Thursday on our visit to the World Museum in Liverpool. Master R has been poorly all week and this was the first day where he was a bit more himself. It was fun to see him interacting with some of the exhibits.



OneDad3Girls

share this on »
Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
1 Comment »

Me & Mine - October 2017

Wednesday, 1 November 2017

Joining up with the Me and Mine Family Portrait Project with this photo of our family for October.


For the first time a photo of all of us dressed up in costumes! I took the kids to visit Daddy at work over the Halloween weekend and surprised him by wearing a costume myself! Chuffed that we managed to get a photo of us altogether.

October Highs:
  • - Miss A has settled well in to school. We had her first parents' evening and she had a glowing report. She always comes out of school with a smile on her face but it's reassuring to hear positive things from her teacher. I've enjoyed helping her with activities for her homework each weekend.
  • - Master R moved up from the baby room at nursery. He's ready to move up and has settled in so quickly. 
  • - Miss A took part in a Rock Concert at school. It was brilliant. She made a great Rock Chick! It was such a good programme run by Rock Kidz.  
  • - Miss A had an inset day at the start of half term so we went to a trampoline park with friends. Each time I go I forget how much energy I need to keep up with Miss A bouncing and running around!
  • - One of my best friends visited whilst she was visiting family up North. It's always so fab to see her and her little boy. I wish they weren't so far away. 
  • - Another visit to Chester Zoo this month. This time with one of Miss A's school friends. It's good to be using our annual membership. 
  • - We paid a visit up North to see Mr MoaB's family for Sunday lunch. 
  • - I actually had a night out and went to see a local amateur dramatics society production of Goodnight Mister Tom. It was nice to be out for an evening and the play was really good. 
  • - Miss A got her first swimming badge. She has always loved the water since I started taking her to lessons at 6 weeks. I'm so pleased she enjoys her lessons and tries so hard. 
  • - It's nice having one on one time with Master R and on one of our days I took him to the Ice Cream Farm. We went to the Honeycomb Canyon which is the big water & sand play area and had it all to ourselves whilst we were there!
  • - The kids and I went in to Chester to see the Diwali Celebrations. It coincided with her homework for that week. There were some amazing puppets. 
  • - The month of course ended with lots of Halloween fun. We went to the shopping centre in Ellesmere Port for the their Halloween event which included a Cursed Castle, face painting and trick or treating around the shops. The best bit was it was all for free! 
  • - The kids and I went on a really good Spooky Trail at Stonyford Cottage Gardens. 
  • - Miss A thoroughly enjoyed the Halloween Party at the Maggie's Centre Merseyside which is where I spend a lot of my time on treatment days whilst I'm waiting between appointments.
  • - We visited Daddy at work to see what antics they were up to over the Halloween weekend. 
  • - Rather than go trick or treating (as we live in a small cul-de-sac) Miss A and I with a school friend and her Mum went to a Halloween event at the Cheshire Horse Sanctuary which included a trail and the chance to sit on a horse. 

October Lows:
  • - Rounds 2 and 3 of my new chemo drug. My last two treatment days have been very frustrating with hours of waiting around. Hopefully I'm going to get morning appointments from now on to ensure I'm at least home in time to see the kids before bedtime. 
  • - Master R has been a bit poorly this month. He had a sickness bug - sods law he was sick on a day he was meant to be at nursery! At the end of the month he had a cold & cough which made him really lethargic so another missed nursery day. Fingers crossed he stays germ free for November. 

The Me + Mine Project - Dear Beautiful

share this on »
Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
6 Comments »
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...