Wednesday, 23 January 2013


There are a few people I wanted to big up for fundraising already done, and others who have sponsored events coming up that I wanted to highlight:

First of all, my work (PLB) have chosen Macmillan as their charity for 2012/2013. They have done a fab job so far with various events and received this nice letter from Macmillan back in November.

PLB staff have raised lots more since then, such as a group of runners (Willem, Clare, Cathy, Rob, Laura, Mike, Suzanne, James and Guy H) taking part in the November Brighton 10k. Everyone finished and the team raised a fantastic £675 for Macmillan. An amazing achievement and thanks to all who sponsored the team :)

Also fun events like "Get Your Baps Out" - cooking sausage and bacon sandwiches on the BBQ at the start of a freezing December!
PLB not only fundraise for Macmillan, in November some of the guys in the office were sporting fab "mos" for Movember and  raised a fantastic £1150 to increase awareness of Testicular and Prostate Cancer. If you click here, you will see the we have even got some Mosista's involved on the last day :)

Two of my friends Robin & Michelle are both being Dryathletes for January. The Dryathlon raises money for Cancer Research. Basically neither if them can drink for the whole of January! Please dig deep and sponsor them if you can :)

In February, my friend Caroline is running the Brighton 1/2 marathon in support of The Olive Tree who have been a wonderful lifeline to me. You can sponsor Caroline by going here

Another friend Bob is running the Great South Run in October in aid of Macmillan, you can sponsor him here

Thanks to all the lovely fundraisers and to all of you who sponsor them!

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

WLE #2

Today I had my second WLE which I needed because they didn't quite get clear margins on the first op. Mum, Rob and I checked in at 07h00 and this time (because of the massive wait last time!) had prepared ourselves for sitting in the waiting room for a long time.

I was taken to register with the nurses at about 07h45 and as last time, she ran through various questions with me & measured me for some sexy anti DVT stockings and got me to wee in a little cup.

About 08h30 I met with my surgeon who explained exactly how the operation would work. Then I met with the anaesthetist who explained to me how the GA would work. He said they would put a cannula in my hand & then I would have the GA injected. He explained my arm would ache a bit & then I would fall asleep. As before, I told him that I was nervous because my veins aren't very compliant now after having had chemo, & he assured me they would be gentle! I also told him that last time I came round from the operation I was sick and he said they would give me extra antiemetics this time.

I then sat down for about another 45 minutes and then was called in to have my operation. It was a bit of a surprise as last time I didn't go through until about 14h00. I was taken through to a room to get changed. I had to leave my knickers on but take everything else off, put on my sexy stockings, hospital gown and then also my slippers and dressing gown which you are told to bring to hospital with you.

I went upstairs (in the lift) to surgery and then lay down on the hospital bed. The anaesthetist talked to me for a little bit and tried to put two cannulas in my hand (where the veins were not playing ball) and then on the third attempt my veins obeyed. The GA felt a little cold going in and then the next thing I knew I was waking up (it was 10h50 so the operation lasted just over an hour) on the recovery ward.

It felt like I was waking up from a massive dream and the first thing I asked was if I had a drain in, and I didn't - woo! I had an oxygen mask on for about half an hour and was also given some painkillers by drip because my wound felt a little sore. After my mask came off I was given some water, and then about 40 minutes later I was taken to the day surgery ward.

At the day surgery ward I was given a sandwich and a cup of tea and told to rest for a while, and that Mum and Rob could come and collect me about 14h00. One tip I'd give anyone reading this, is to take something to read, because just lying there waiting is very boring! Last time, because of the norovirus outbreak and lack of beds I had to just wait on the recovery ward (rather than go to the day surgery ward) and therefore I thought the same would happen again this time so brought nothing to read with me, mistake!

The lady from Medi-Home came to see me and said they would visit me at home for the next few days until they officially discharged me.

Once I had got my strength back up, I got dressed and sat in the chair in the day ward so that my bed could be made up for the next patient. Mum and Rob turned up about 14h00 and we waited for my BCN Carole who had a brief chat to me and gave me my follow-up appointment letter for 01/02/13. Fingers crossed for clear margins this time!

By 15h30 I was home, much better than the 21h00 last time :)

Sunday, 13 January 2013

Food For Friends

Today I met up with some of the girls (Nicola, Amie, Kate, Hannah & Carolyn) from the Brighton BCC Forum I went to in November.

We went to a lovely vegetarian restaurant in the Brighton Lanes called Food for Friends, the food was delicious! I had Sweet Tofu Pockets to start and then Butternut Squash Gnocchi for main. Amie had a delicious sticky toffee pudding for dessert but couldn't manage it all so I knidly helped her out ;)

It was really nice to see all the girls, catch up with them and compare hair growth!

Monday, 7 January 2013

Op Update

On Friday I went for the results of my operation and I got mixed news. The great news is that following the SLNB, the lymph nodes do not contain cancer cells meaning that the cancer is contained and has not spread.

What happens after a lumpectomy is that the tissue that has been removed is examined to see if there is a 2mm margin of healthy cells around the cancer. This is known as a clear or negative margin. Unfortunately in my case there wasn't a clear margin (known as positive margins - ironic because it's not positive news!), which means that I need to have another operation (scheduled for 22/01) to remove a bit more tissue. Apparently this happens in around 20-25% of cases following a WLE.

Although obviously I'm really pleased about the lymph nodes, this journey just seems never ending!

Wednesday, 2 January 2013

Bragging Rights

Just had an email from Macmillan telling me that my Community Guest Blog on their website was the most viewed guest post of the last quarter of 2012 :)