BERT2011 (Bugger, Estrogen Receptive Tumor)….

Metastic breast cancer at 38

Overdue update

Apologies, it has been a long time since my last confession πŸ˜ƒ…. 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 πŸ™‚

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Phew!

Ok so had some little tit bits of good news recently.. I had another scan of my liver last week to see if the ‘anomalie’ that showed in my liver on the last scan was growing or not.. And the results are in …. It’s still unclear what it is for certain, however whatever it is it’s shrunk.. Which is fabulous news as this means that I can remain on the Letrozole tablets for now as they appear to be doing what they should.. So.. Lung tumours are stable and liver anomalie is smaller… Time for a little dance! πŸ’ƒ

The other good news is that my tumour marker levels have dropped… Tumour Markers?? I hear you say.. Well yes that’s pretty much what I said.. As these little thing have never come up in conversation before!
Google to the rescue… tumour markers.. And I find out that increased levels of these markers can indicate some cancers.. Now I was aware about this for prostrate cancer etc but not for breast cancer.. My levels have dropped from 47 in December 2013 to 32 now, March.. Which apparently is within the ‘normal’ range… So whilst this is fabulous news I mustn’t get too excited as it’s only a possible indication… But I’ll take it.. Good news is good news.

House update.. Demolition has begun.. And my life’s about to get mega mega busy.. So bear with me on the updates xx

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Tough night

Good Evening All..

Well so much as this blog is for me to keep you all in the loop.. It’s also a place for me to put my thoughts…. So.. In the words of Sports Writers.. If you don’t want to see the score “look away now”… Tonight’s post is a little miserable.

I’m having a tough night tonight.. The great magnitude of.. I have terminal cancer, and I’m never going to have children… Is hitting a little too hard this evening.. Feeling a bit low….

Most of the time I’m able to put this to the back of my mind.. I would rather live a life of being as normal as possible.. ( yes I know.. Normal and Jane in the same sentence is a bit of a paradox) but a normal life is all that I crave. It’s easier to handle the diagnosis filling my thoughts with.. “Well I could get run over by a bus as easily as die from cancer” most of the time keeps me going… But occasionally have these times.. When the magnitude of it all seems overwhelming.

I think the catalyst for tonight’s outburst is the difficulty Andy and I are having accepting the fact that we cannot have children… Whilst we were always in the.. Not quite ready camp… We always thought we would some day.. And now that’s just not possible it’s quite hard to deal with. I had my ovaries out a few weeks ago and the finality of that is quite hard to deal with.. It’s like when you buy a new car, once you’ve set your heart on the new model you like.. Everywhere you go you see one of those models! Bit like that when you realise you cannot have children…everywhere we look our friends are experiencing the joy of parenthood…

Sorry… Did warn you that’s tonight’s post was miserable!…can’t expect frivolity all the time 😜… If it makes it easier to read.. Putting the words on paper (so to speak) has helped.

I’d like to give a shout out tonight to carers… When you are given a terminal cancer diagnosis everyone focuses on how the patient feels.. But those who are closest are often neglected… Hearing your child, wife, sister, daughter in law, friend…. Is going to die is not easy to deal with.. And we must all make sure to try and understand what they go through too…. And I’m as guilty of forgetting this as anyone.

Health update… Well had my ovaries out.. Scans on those came back clear which is good news.. Have a CT in 2 weeks to look again at my liver, there was something showing on the last scan and it wasn’t there before.. So scanning again.. But hopefully whatever is there hasn’t grown and Letrozole is still working it’s magic. Hip has been giving me a little jip since the ovary op..probably not enough physio on my part so must give myself a kick.. Beautiful bruise on my tummy for a recent denusumab (bone strengthener) injection… And had a burn on… Embarrasingly!!.. My bum from the radiotherapy, but putting flamazine cream on now and it seems to be healing.

Well… The written word is obviously therapeutic as coming to the end of tonight’s blog I feel a little clearer headed… Thankyou for listening world! Sweet dreams x

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Take a breath, and be thankful

Just spoken to my friend on the phone, who rang up to wish me well tomorrow in my surgery.. Ovary removal day tomorrow… And I said to her I’m sat here looking at a blank page and a curser wondering what to write…

What do you put on the night before a surgeon and a scalpel take away your chance to give birth…. So tonight on my blog I have 2 phrases for you…

“Take a breath”… I had a small 5 minute wobble earlier when driving to the shop for supplies… How cruel Cancer is and what it has and is about to take away from me… In 2011 Andy and I were married.. ( it was the best day of my life).. We thought we would have children within a year… BERT had other ideas… 2013 and we thought we had cancer behind us.. Time to build our dream home ready for us to have a child of our own… BERT again decided this was not to be… So for the 5 mins in the car tonight I was seriously p*ssed off at what cancer has taken away… Seriously cancer research pull your finger out its time we had a cure!! And hopefully nothing is being held back for ‘making money’ reasons. … So once I’d regained my composure and given myself a swift kick.. I had to ‘take a breath’ and remember that although life has dealt me several bad eggs.. It also has dealt me some good things..
Andy.. My soulmate and love of my life
My family who are there for me even when I’m grumpy
My true friends who are there when I need them
Tia… Simply … My child

Which brings me on to my second phrase… “Be thankful”… For all you parents out there and parents to be… Through the tough times and those moments when you could cheerfully “swing for them” ( not literally!)…. Think of me tonight.. I won’t get that chance… So instead of screaming at your child Hug them… Instead of getting angry give them a kiss and tell them you love them.. Really a messy bedroom, not a big deal in the grand scheme of things.

Ok.. Preaching over…

Let’s get these oestrogen pumping things out of me.. Kick BERT back down and MOVE ON!

Sweet dreams all x

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The ups and downs of secondary cancers

So some great news and some …well… Un-nerving news today.

Good news… The tumours in my lung ( apparently 5 of not 2, I got it wrong before) have not changed size!!! Woohoo so this means that the Letrozole is working… So far so good.

Bad news.. There is an “indeterminate leision” in my liver which was not on the scans before, however this could be nothing and apparently can happen just because of the way the scans are done… So going back in 6 weeks to scan again and see if it’s grown… Hoping it’s just a cyst.

Sigh of relief though today about my lung tumours…. I had convinced myself that they would’ve grown so I feel immensely relieved tonight.

Here’s hoping that next time we go I only get good news πŸ™‚

Thanks to everyone for the well wishes xxx

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Freaky..!

So.. This blog is for me to put down my thoughts on my journey with Cancer…so tonight…. I’m a bit freaked out it has to be said.

Tomorrow I get the CT scan results from my first scan since we found the tumours in my lungs… And I have to say I’m fairly freaked out in anticipation of what tomorrow will bring.

I’m so humbled by everyone calling me “brave” etc.. So tonight’s post is just to say that.. You know what this sh*t is scary and I! just like you all are not always brave ……Sometimes it’s pretty intimidating.

But whatever tomorrow brings I’m thankful for the life I have and hopefully will continue to have.

Here’s hoping that the lung tumours ( Bernadette and bernita) have stayed the same size tomorrow or even better they have shrunk.

Update tomorrow peeps xx

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A long overdue update….

Well it’s been a mad busy few weeks, so apologies for not keeping everyone uptodate ☺️, that is assuming that you all want an update!! Ha ha check me out so cocky in assuming that people even want to know!

Well, I’ve finished my radiotherapy now, and the tiredness has worn off, but it’s obviously still “working” as the skin on my leg where they gave me the radio is still warm, and slightly pink.. I’m really like a hot water bottle in bed now! .

My next, and hopefully last for a while… Operation is booked in.. I’ll be going into Sheffield hallamshire on the 12th of February to have my ovaries removed.. This will mean I no longer have to the injections to suppress the nasty little oestrogen from feeding the evil little cancer cells… Cut off the food source as it were!. I’m looking forwards to getting this surgery behind me and hopefully life returning a little more to normal. It will mean general anaesthetic again and 2 weeks rest and off work but it feels like a positive move forwards.

Off for a CT scan this week to see if the tumours in my lung have shrunk/stayed the same/grown… Let’s hope it’s not the latter!.. Should get the results in a couple of weeks when they compare them to my previous scan.

Well must cut this short as off to Aunty Clare’s for dinner.. Yum!!

Wrap up warm peeps it’s a chilly one tonight! Xx

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Them bones, them bones, them thigh bones!

πŸŽ‰πŸŽ‰ Happy New Year!!πŸŽ‰πŸŽ‰ 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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‘Twas the night before Christmas..,

Well Santas on his travels around the world and it is a time for wishes and thanks.. So here are mine.

Firstly I’d like to wish all my family and friends a very Merry Christmas, enjoy the time with your families, yes sometimes it can be tough, so many hours with family… But remember that if you could not spend the time with them you would miss them.

A quick update on my treatment…. My radiotherapy treatment is now set, and I’ve started! In fact I have only 6 treatments to go.. I’m having radiotherapy on my right femur and hip, and have been prescribed 10 treatments, we go every day as we did when I had treatment for breast cancer.. And go into a machine as before, it’s painless at the time however it’s an accumulative treatment so. I get tired and have more symptoms with each treatment. I’m glad to be doing something..

At the end of this year I’d like to just mention a few friends and family who have offered Andy and I tremendous support over the last few weeks with their time and kindness…

Mum & Dad, Steph & Phil… Thankyou so much for helping us with the meals, dog walking duties and taxi service… I know I get grumpy sometimes and don’t always show it, but we are very thankful to know that you are there when we need you. Bear with me…I’m a very independent person and not being able to do something for myself is incredibly frustrating.

Aunty Clare, yum yum!! The cakes are simply delicious, thankyou ( though I have to stop.. Weight loss begins in earnest now), and Tia has been loving walking with you and your dogs.. Thankyou so much xx

Paul, what can we say.. You have been an absolute rock for us, helping walk Tia and taking me to the hospital when Andy can’t… Means the world to us, thankyou.

Sarah B,… Our shopping escape was just wonderful.. Getting out of the house was such a treat, and taking me to physio was above and beyond… Thankyou.

Think that’s my thankyous for now, except to thank everyone for their comments and kind words on the blog.. Hearing from you all is lovely and gives me courage xx.

Now… Wishes… This year I have but one…. I wish for more Christmases to come please… And I’m willing to fight for them.

So, without further adieu…

Happy Christmas to all and to all.. For now… A good night. 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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