BERT2011 (Bugger, Estrogen Receptive Tumor)….

Metastic breast cancer at 38

“Here we go again, on my own” (white snake lyrics )

It’s been a long time since my last “confession”.. Post apologies everyone I have been ridiculously busy building my own home… Literally.

For those who don’t know me I’ll begin today with a quick recap, but ultimately today’s post is to give an update to my friends and family on my current health and treatment.

2011 – diagnosed stage 2 breast cancer
2011 got married
2012 – IVF
2012- chemo
2012 -bought a bungalow to demolish and full a life’s dream of building my own home and try and put cancer behind me
2013 – fell down broke my hip – total hip replacement
2013 – found out hip was week due to a tumour… Breast cancer had Metastasised to my bones… Stage 4 cancer (Incurable)

Which brings 2014… Big year this year.

Demolished bungalow, began building… Separated from husband, getting divorced..
started Hormone treatment for cancer, failed, stared clinical trial failed…

Next Friday.. I will start Chemotherapy again.

So… here we go again.. This time on my own.. 😥… Hopefully with the help of my family and friends… But certainly if you’d have asked me 3 years ago where I’d be right now this is Not what I had in mind!!

The details… I will go for my first Chemo next Friday. And current assumption 6 lots once every 3 weeks as before.. I will loose my hair AGAIN!! My chemo this time is Taxotere, it will be given intravenously and I’ll most likely require steroids with it too… Pretty scared that this will make me look bloated.

How to I feel ?…. PISSED OFF!!!, scared.. Chemo has come 12 months early than I was anticipating.. Scared that this means my life is shorter. Upset that I will loose my hair again.. It’s really shit loosing your hair I won’t lie.

I can write no more to you all today as I now can’t see the screen for tears… But I promise I’ll be back soon… the Thorpey MOJO has been challenged this week and I need a few days to get back on track…

be right back peeps xxxx

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Overdue update

Apologies, it has been a long time since my last confession 😃…. I’ve been so busy of late building the house that I’ve not had a spare minute to update my blog.. I’ve also been hanging on for some results that I’ve had back today.

So a few weeks ago I started with a back pain that just wasn’t going away, after emailing The Prof he suggested I came in for some tests.. Had a full Bone Density scan which through up some areas of concern, one in the top of my spine and one in my pelvis.. The area of back pain however was clear. They sent for another CT to get a better look at these areas and they have thankfully come back as clear today.. The areas in the bone scan were showing as areas of Acitivity, however this was not bone degradation but thankfully on this occasion bone healing, which means the Denusomab injections I have every 4 weeks are doing their job and strengthening my bones.
There was however a down side… Isn’t there always!… The Anomalie that’s been seen before in my liver has grown, we were hoping this was just a blood vessel, but now it’s not certain and I’m going for another MRI to have a closer look.. If it’s grown and is a tumour this may mean I need to change drugs which is not great, but hopefully will find out in a couple of weeks.

For those reading my blog for awareness… The Letrozole is making my joints in my hands very still, how I would imagine arthritis feels.. Worse 1st thing in the morning.. Once I get moving I’m ok… Feet sometimes too.. Like an old woman! Hey oh it’s a small price to pay.

House… It’s coming along fantastic, so so pleased with it.. Hoping to get water tight within the next month! Picture attached.

Keep smiling all, and every sunshiny day is another day I’ve had 🙂

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Them bones, them bones, them thigh bones!

🎉🎉 Happy New Year!!🎉🎉 everyone, I hope you have all had a wonderful Christmas and holiday season.

We’ve had a very busy holidays, with parties and catching up with friends, marred only slightly by trips to the hospital for my radiotherapy. However this does mean than I now only have…. Drum roll please… 2 more radio sessions left woohoo… On the down side I’m am feeling more tired, I couldn’t figure out why the other day and put it down to “too many parties” but as Andy reminded me the last time I had radio I had, a little and often (25 sessions) this time I’m having fewer session but a stronger dose.. 10 sessions.. So I guess it kinda makes sense that I’m tired at an earlier rate. Oh well. Nice to be on the home straight.

In other news.. I’ve been to see the orthopaedic surgeon this week ( well his registrar ) and they’ve signed me off to drive, which is such a relief!! In the words of George Michael “FREEDOM!” , it’s so so nice to have my independence back. The registrar also showed me my after op scan.. It’s truly amazing!!

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The only other bits of news I have is I now have my first appointment booked to see the gynaecologist to have my ovaries removed… So hopefully 1 more surgery and I’ll be done for the moment and then normal life can resume for a while.

Hip-wise, physio is going well but I can only admit that I’ve been a tad lazy with it over Xmas, so time to kick start again now.

That’s all for now folks.. Enjoy the new year, and live every day to the fullest xx

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Moving on up, moving on up!

Ok.. Movies now changed to song titles.. Thoughts I’ve not written on my blog for. Week or so and when I clicked the app on my ipad to write an update this song from M People popped into my head.. Seems apt.

Funny I remember going to see M People with my sister many eons ago, and both of us loved to sing and dance, couldn’t wait to go, how disappointed we were with their live show.. I must admit I get really upset these days at the musical industry that promotes those who cannot actually sing live! .

Anyway.. I digress… For all my friends, family and family living abroad it’s about time I gave an update… Firstly.. Love and hugs to you all.. And welcome and hello to all my new followers.. Have to say I am extremely humbled by all the kind words that everyone is sending me.. Really guys my blog really isn’t that interesting!! Seriously go out.. Get drunk it’s Christmas you have better things to do than read this! 😜

Not much happened in the last couple of weeks.. I am still awaiting my schedule for radiotherapy, bit of a mix up I think re the whole ” you refer her, no you do it” between my old and new oncologists.. But hopefully the new silver fox has it now in hand, after I emailed him whilst he was at a conference in San Fran ( as you do) and he replied to apologise and say all was in hand.. Thanks Prof!.

Had another of the EVIL ovary injections this week… Have to say.. Not half as painful when the lady administering has previous experience, so other than the.. Oh o we’ve not got your prescription, and hang on your notes have disappeared…. Sorry Susie, NHS between 2 hospitals hit a road bump this week… All in all a not too scary visit to the hospital this week. 1.5 hours later and 1 ovary blocker and 1 bone helper injection and good to go. Now taking calci-yummy tablets too.. Also apparently I need a healthy dose of vitaminD… What a shame we will need more sunny holidays!! Yay.

Conscious I’m perhaps rambling… On a different note to BERT, as many of you may know Andy and I bought a bungalow last year to knock down and rebuild a house… It’s been my life long dream to build my own home, as my father did for his family.. And post my last argument with BERT I convinced Andy what a great idea it would be…. So unable to buy land ( short supply) we bought a clapped out old bungalow in Ulley, heelllloooooo to my new friends in the village! …. And we have been battling for the last few months.. Ok since March!!! To get some plans through planning…. Still not going so well.. Apparently if you’d like to replace an ugly bungalow with a stone built house in a greenbelt isn’t quite as easy as you’d think… So this week has been quite stressful as we have drawn and re- drawn our plans several times.. Resubmission happened today,. And hopefully we will have a positive result in January… The last decision was a refusal… Keep your fingers crossed peeps… I need to rebuild so that we can have a ” I kicked BERT’s butt ” party!

It’s odd to think I’m writing on here again… When you stop treatment, the blog finishes. You think.. I’m done let’s get on with life… Yet I find myself here again… Hmm.. Well bear with me and my odd ramblings.

Merry Christmas to you all, and make sure you take the time to tell those around you, You love them.. Kiss the dog and get outside and enjoy the fresh air! Xx

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A new challenge

Good afternoon all! ..

Well it’s now 3.5 weeks since my last radiotherapy session and I’m back at work… It’s going ok so far.. Still hoping my brain still works!!

My eye lashes have grown back!!! I cannot explain how nice this is! And my hair is coming back… I now look like a boy! Photos to follow…

I have set myself a new challenge and I’m hoping that my followers on here will support me in some small way… On 2nd of September I will be running the Sheffield bupa 10k (6 miles!!!) run to raise money for the Weston park cancer research hospital where I was lucky enough to be treated.

http://www.wphcancercharity.org.uk/ take a look for more information…

As anyone who’s going through treatment or recently finished I hope you can understand that running 6 miles is going to be a fair effort so close after my treatment so I’m really hoping that I can raise some money to make it worth the effort…

Anyone who’d like to sponsor me can do so at http://www.justgiving.com/Jane-W

Please just £1, if all my friends did that we’d have a good amount… It doesn’t need to be a large amount every little bit helps..

Thankyou thankyou for reading and hopefully sponsoring me

Jane x

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Woohoo the fat lady has sung!!

The day has finally arrived!!!! My last day of treatment has now come and gone!!!! It’s hard to describe how I feel today…. Immensely elated at having finished treatment after 9.5 long hard months…. Now that it’s over I can say that… I’ve never wanted to moan or complain throughout my treatment as I think it just makes you feel worse and makes everyone else feel sorry for you, which was the last thing I wanted. But now that it’s over… Thank god!!!! Jeez it’s been tough, smiling when you don’t feel like it can get very wearying.

But now it’s done!!!!!!! OH MY GOODNESS it’s a wonderful wonderful feeling, no more traipsing to the hospital every day, not more thinking just another step to go, no more needles!!! No more hair loss ( hmm maybe selective hairloss would be nice!) … Huge smiles today.

There is one tiny part of me that’s scared today though… Whilst you are being treated its good, you can focus on ” it’s ok they are throwing everything at me, we are doing something” but now that’s it it’s slightly scary to think that apart from tamoxifen (estrogen blocking) tablets that that’s it… It’s the scary part of , is it gone? Will it come back?

But less about that and more about today… Going out for dinner tonight with my husband to celebrate, 🙂 Glad rags on!!!

I’d like to take this point to thank all my family and friends for their support throughout this journery… THANKYOU!!! Your kind words, thoughts and actions have meant the world to Andy and I and we humbley thank you from the bottom of our hearts..

A few important people to mention here….

Andy…. Babe it’s been a tough first year of marriage, you are my rock and I couldn’t have done this without you… Love you forever babe, only way is up xxx

Mum & Dad… Where to begin, thankyou thankyou for all the constant help, ironing, cooking, dog walking, trips to the hospital… You’ve been wonderful thankyou. x

Steph ( my mother in law) & Phil… You have really stood by us this last few months and I can’t tell you how thankful we are, trekking down to see us, taking me to chemo and just being there for us has been wonderful, thankyou x

Would also like to thank on mass the following…. Love you all and hopefully one day I can repay the favours….

Aunty Clare — the supply of home cooked meals has been too kind, and very much appreciated

Sarah, Alex, Kathy, Paul, Lorraine, Neil — for treating me as normal… And ignoring my upset at loosing my hair… The shaving party was great fun!

Emma D — so so very touched that this year when you have so so much on your plate you always found the time to come and see me to break up the day. Xxxx

Dan, — after years of not being in touch when the Sh*t hit the fan there you were popping in for a cuppa to brighten my day… Thankyou..

To all my overseas family, you know who you all are… I love you and thankyou so much for all the messaged and phone calls… Xxx

Erica… Thankyou for always being there, for taking me to lunch and just keeping me company… Can’t wait to be your bridemaid xxx

Anna…. Well what would I have done without you and your family for months!!! You, Henry Richard and Scarlett have kept me sane, the boredom of being at home all the time would’ve driven me nuts without our afternoon cuppas… Thankyou, will miss you terribly when we move.

I’m sure I’ve forgotten someone, thankyou everyone.

Ok so oscar speech over… 6 weeks till my next checkup now… So for now, thankyou and goodnight xx

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Certain times in your life

Sometimes in your life you are given pause for thought, reflection time.. Or something will happen to make you question yourself and look at your life..

Today I have had one of those experiences… Whilst waiting to have my radiotherapy today I was sat reading my book when a boy and his mum came and sat at the side of me, we had a little chat he’d just finished chemo and was like me on his first week of radio… I kept my smile firmly in place wanting to make him feel at ease and try and make him feel like he’s not alone… It’s difficult sometimes when everyone else around you is so much older… This is a mood thing really as cancer is such a cruel disease so I’m glad when the only people I see are older than me… Today when the boy went in got his treatment before me I was sat talking to his mum… Embarrassingly I was brought to tears when she told me he was 15… It makes you so angry… I hope to keep seeing him over the next few weeks and I hope that I can give him some small smile at least.

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Radiotherapy continues…. So far so good

I’ve been for my 2nd radiotherapy appointment today, 2 down 23 to go… Has gone ok today, my right arm and side are a bit sore not from the radio but from having to hold my arm above my head… The muscles and nerves have obviously not yet fully recovered but I’m ok.

It wasn’t too bad today, it’s an accumulative process apparently so more of the side effect should start to show in the coming days/weeks… Apparently I’ll be worse 2 weeks after its finished.

Wanted to say thankyou to the nurses/ radiologists at Weston Park today, they are all such lovely ladies and do make me smile… And they let me take a photo of the machine to show you all so you can see what I do each day…

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This is the machine in its standby state, I have to lay on it and then they move me and it into place and give me radiotherapy from 3 angles, each side and above…

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Home stretch… Well sort of

Had my radiotherapy assessment appointment yesterday.. I was a bit freaked out about it as my oncologist had previously mentioned that theyd want to tattoo me… Yes I did type that right … Tattoo!!!! Me !! The girl who’s afraid of needles and only had her ears pierced at the ripe age of 35!

So we get there and I was pleasantly surprised to be virtually straight in, which is totally unusual there’s usually at least and hour wait every time I go to the hospital :-).. So we sat down with radiologist and he explained what was going to happen, we talked about the tattoos, which they heavily recommend.. And I donned the usually sexy gown and off we went..

For those of you like me who had never experienced this before here’s the process..

I laid on my back and was put into place by the radiographer, this involved laying there with my right arm ( because Bert (tumour) was in my right breast) above my head holdIng a handle, she then positioned me on the bed ready to be moved into the CT scanner, this is a donut type machine which has a ring in it about 4/5 inches wide which spins around you taking slice type shots… I think :-).
then with marker pens lines are drawn on me around my breast and up into the lymph nodes in. Y neck, this is the area that I will be getting radiotherapy on.. On top of some of these lines tiny metal strips are placed to aid the machine. Essentially a map is drawn on me.

So once in place everyone leaves the room and I am moved in and out of the scanner Whilst they take the shots… Then it’s tattoo time….

I was exceptionally nervous at this point, everyone was great with me and really patient…. Even when the tears fell. The radiologist put 3 crosses on me, one on each side of my body and one one my chest bone between my breasts, then after sterilising each area she placed an ink drop on each point and pressed the ink under my skin with a needle… Though it was uncomfortable it isnt half as bad as the blood taking or canula… I’d worked myself up over nothing :-)..

Should mention that these tattos are done so that they can more acurately align the machine every time I go, daily.

Well that was yesterday.. Feeling fine today in fact I’m really proud of myself, I’ve put on some weight the last few months with the lack of exercise and laying about so I’ve been swimming today!! 50 lengths and I feel tired but really pleased I’ve done it.. Just hope I can continue now.

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Radiotherapy – the next step starts today

I’m now over the last effects of the chemotherapy, apart from hair loss obviously… Much as I wish it would grow back overnight my hair just refuses to do so! Oh how I long for the days when I would wake in a morning and wonder what the hell happened to my hair overnight 🙂

So today starts my next step in the journey, radiotherapy.. I’m off to the hospital in about half an hour for my pre-radio assessment, my understanding from the leaflet and Internet is that they willbe x-ray’ing me today and deciding where to administer the radio.. I believe they will want to give me a permanent tattoo, like a freckle, so that this can be used every time I go to “align” everything…

I haven’t yet received a schedule for the radio, but currently estimating that I’ll start on Monday and have radio 5 days a week for the next 5 weeks…

Little bit apprehensive about today as I don’t like needles and the idea of a tattoo is freaking me out, the rest of it I think I can cope with… Side effects of radio I’m expecting are sore skin and more of the dreaded fatigue!… It’s been so long now I can’t remember what it was like to have energy :-).

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