The hospital staff were wonderful and very sensitive. Within eight days I had been diagnosed, had an endoscopy, had a CT scan and had a stent fitted to enable me to swallow.
I was told that chemotherapy was the unfortunately the only option to treat my cancer, as it had already metastasised to my liver and lung, so I gave my consent and started the treatment. Straight away I reacted quite badly to it - I was very sick during the first chemotherapy cycle and had to have injections to help with the side-effects. I was supported by Ian Rennie nurses who were and continue to be wonderful. One good thing was that I didn’t completely lose my hair as a result of the chemotherapy - I wore a cold cap during the treatments, which meant that although cut short, I still retained my hair.
The doctors changed my nausea tablets for subsequent treatments, which did help a bit, but I still felt very weak. The nurses didn’t expect me to manage the final treatment but with their support and against the odds I did. After three chemotherapy treatments there was a slight tumour shrinkage and after the final treatment the cancer was reported as stable.
Improving My Quality of Life
I’ve done a number of things to help with the side effects of the chemotherapy, including managing the stress and anxiety, which is something that I suffer badly with. Reiki has helped me enormously with this and over the last 8 months I have attended relaxation classes at my local hospital, which included a guided journey. These have been wonderful and I find they take me away from any worries.
Consulting a nutritionist has made an enormous difference to me, as I feel now have an awareness of foods that could aggravate my cancer. Before this, I was depressed, as my prognosis wasn’t good, and I didn’t feel I had any quality of life. The nutritionist has helped me to adapt and improve my diet, which has not only improved my physical health but also my mental health. The consultations with the nutritionist have enabled me to do something positive towards giving myself the best quality of life while living with cancer.
The most wonderful news is that I have now outlived the prognosis I was given and through the help I am receiving, hopefully will continue to do so. I am certainly stronger than I was and live for every day. Thank you ‘Yes To Life’ so very much for all your help - words will never express how much it has meant to me.