Wednesday, 29 December 2010

the straw that broke the camels back

straw or almost anyway. I have been considering the last four weeks. which brought me to consider the last three years - which brought me to almost screaming point once I looked at everything back to back. I am wondering how exactly one knows when a nervous breakdown is imminent. Maybe one doesn't realise one is having one at all? Perhaps once you constantly feel like screaming, crying or hiding, battering people with ones handbag, you're there already…

I appear to be living in 'interesting times'. Purportedly a Chinese curse. Christmas is definitely NOT a good time in our house. My diagnosis 3 years ago was just after Christmas. The FH's mum got ill at Christmas and died in the February - then I lost my contract last Christmas because I couldn't go to Portugal as I needed a scan [yeah, I know…sucks right?]. Self same scan [yes, you guessed it - just before Christmas] found 'something'. We spent a torturous month of December into January wondering if I had a recurrence, until, thankfully, I had the laparoscopy and was pronounced clear. THAT seemed a miracle. Probably it was. And I am grateful for it.

This Christmas my father died. And possibly, this is starting to sound like a great big self pitying whinge. But to be honest , I am merely trying to get my head around such a never ending [for me] catalogue of disasters…big things, little things…one after the other. I start to feel like the losing boxer in the ring - the one who simply falls all over the place bleeding from the nose and looking confused. Is the expression punch drunk? maybe. That's how I feel. We are exhausted with it all.

Today was absolutely a perfect microcosm of our lives right now. The ABS on the car is playing up - the windscreen washer won't work, the extractor hood over the cooker has exploded, the Wild Things smash something every single day [we are getting a very 'minimalist' look here at home]…

And, last Thursday 23rd my pc blue screened. Fffftzzz….the end. Called Dell, whom I have a 'next day service' warranty with [thanks Pete!]. they didn't come the next day - they came today!! Almost a week later. And when they came, they brought the wrong drivers…the wrong drivers?!? WTF!?? So I am still without a machine, and that's with two new clients to do work for. I lost 2 hours of Chalet bashing wages to come home for the technician and that happens?

I started work at 7.00. I was NOT amused. I raced back to do a bit more bashing after the Dell catastrophe…I had a hair appointment at 1.30. Raced onto the dual carriageway from the Salt Mine and what ho! Stuck in a traffic jam for 40 minutes [usually an 8 minute trip]. ABS lights flashing madly on the dash. Washers not working. Screen covered in salt. Joy.

Had my hair chopped off eventually. Hoorah. One success. It does look rather nice too - thanks to the FH and his Christmas day dishwashing attack - all the money he earned, he gave me to have my hair done. darling man. Blessings that keep one sane.

Raced home [again!!] - got on the phone to Dell. Having stewed away under all that peroxide at the hairdressers I had my shouting down pat. Very merrily raised total HELL with the delightfully polite Indian fellow I was transferred to [yes, I was being DIFFICULT - as in, demanding a decent service!!]. Every time he said 'but…' I said 'DO NOT BUT..' and carried on regardless - it was interesting to say the least, and surprisingly, they are following my rather sharply issued commands…well, we'll see if they do anyway. 'Come tomorrow after 3.00'. 'Call me and tell me exactly WHAT they intend to do to recompense me for 3 days lost wages'…I want an extension of my warranty - and told him he better NOT call me unless he is going to give me one…one that is actually honoured!

Grr. Tomorrow they are coming AGAIN. This time, I am going to lock the technician in the house until my bloody computer is working!!

Soon I have my check up. Tomorrow I need to book in for my bloods. A 6 month gap has made me VERY nervous. Can you tell?


Wednesday, 22 December 2010

and last [for today!] but certainly not least

DSC_0117On Saturday I woke up to my iPhone meeping at me. Telling me to go to my Justgiving page immediately [what is it with phones that they're so bossy?!]. And, slave to technology that I am, I did.

Woop! A person called Sarah donated £100.00 [ONE HUNDRED POUNDS!!!] to my Justgiving fund!! I almost fell out of the bed!  Specs flying and kittens shoved off onto the floor!

Sarah - thank you so much. I wish I could get in touch, but you didn't leave your email on Justgiving. Please get in touch if you want to - I know you are going through treatment. Just make a comment on the blog or add me on Facebook? Or not - as you choose.

But thank you - it's always amazing when people one doesn't even know do something so kind. And every single penny goes to research into women's cancers - bring it on!! :)

Thank you Sarah, and sending you LOTS of positive thoughts. I hope your treatment is going well and that you will come out the other side as fit and fat as I have.  I know you can.

and now for something cheerful

DSC_0051 months ago we decided that we couldn't really afford to do our normal 'Christmas Thing'. The normal 'Christmas Thing' involves me buying things all year, spending [with great delight!] a small fortune on gifts, wrap and ribbon etc etc and then 10 hours wrapping everything in coordinating colours while the FH writes the gift tags [matching ones!]. T'was not to be in 2010! Instead, we bought tickets to the ballet for the Childerbeasts and that was their gift. And tickets for us too, in order to enjoy their enjoyment if you see what I mean? For everyone else? Well - lots of good wishes really.

So we went to see the Nutcracker Suite at the London Coliseum. It was a great trip. I, being a pain in the proverbial, was a tad picky about the performance, but it was very enjoyable - the Opera House just seemed too big for the cast for starters…

The Grand daughter loved it - and that made me really happy. We'd looked forward to it so much - it was really worth it to watch her little face light up. She informed me that it was a 'very posh' place and could she have an orange juice. We had 3 small glasses of Pinot, and the orange juice - it cost £20!! Oh well - at least the wine was good ;) All those Swarovski crystal covered tutus worked wonders on her child's outlook. So pretty! We banged heads 3 times during the performance, trying to discuss things in whispers :) So, we all loved the ballet.

London [and the whole of the UK] has had horrendous weather this last week or two. Snow [my nemesis] and freezing. It was -19° when we were wandering the slushy streets on Sunday evening. Poor Youngest Step Daughter had Wellies on - hello blue, painful and frozen feet! Ugh. The pubs wouldn't let us in, as we had the G'daughter in tow. But we found a fab Mexican restaurant in Covent Garden and ate more food in one go than I'd usually eat in a week! Thank you Martin for dinner - what a treat! Here's the FH, the Youngest Step Daughter and the G'daughter. Exhausting aren't they? All those cheery smiles bless them ;) The G'daughter will have teeth again soon! [we hope]


We went to the Hyde Park Christmas Market - lots of junk to buy there - all totally overpriced, but we wanted everything nonetheless heh heh. And so many wonderful smells and sights! Talking Moose heads too. Much to the FH's hilarity…




Then we bumbled off 'home' to the hotel, and got together for breakfast at a pub the next morning.

DSC_0055 On the way home [which we weren't actually certain we'd reach!], we stopped on Waterloo Bridge for some photos and almost got hypothermia. My feet were frozen after 10 steps - thank goodness for buses! Check out the Eye.


We arrived home after the LONGEST train trip EVER [stopped at EVERY station between Waterloo and Exeter - shriek!!] to ten inches of snow!! I have never actually seen this much snow in my life - startling to say the least. And extremely tedious! Thanks to Georgie for sitting the house and looking after the Wild Things…we dug the car out of the parking lot [ffft!!] and crawled home to open a bottle of the wine Mum and Dad gave us for Christmas - might as well start now? And a lovely wine it was too.

Well. That's Christmas done as far as we're concerned…the next week or so we are working every day…lets hope nothing else horrible happens eh?

and the beat goes on

on Tuesday we had the funeral. It was [as far as funerals go], really nice. A Humanist service, very calm, very dignified and peaceful. A tribute to Dad's life rather than a bewailing of his death. It seemed very personal. Mum was amazing - I don't know how she did it. I just kept wondering how I would be if it were the FH. And it made [and makes] me feel cold and sick inside. I was so glad he was there with me.

Ian, Dad's brother, spoke for us all and made a wonderful job of it. He chose the music [jazz - Dad's favourite] - and at the end of his words, which were lovely, he read this passage by Mary Frye:

"Do not stand at my grave and weep;
I am not there, I do not sleep
I am a thousand winds that blow.
I am the diamond glints on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
I am the gentle autumn rain.

When you awaken in the morning's hush
I am the swift uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circled flight.
I am the soft stars that shine at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry;
I am not there. I did not die."

Dad will always be 'the diamond glints on snow' - it's the beastly snow that killed him.

The final track Ian chose was Ella Fitzgerald's "Goodnight, My Love". Fitting. And Mum, my brothers, the family and I - we all said goodbye.


Then it seems, life must go on - and it's hard. Because it does. One feels as if one should be able to inform everyone that one is NOT in 'the mood'. For anything really. Where's a space to gather oneself? There isn't one. Christmas? Er - no. Not this year. Take that tree and stick it [in a bonfire]. Better yet, leave it in the ground to grow instead of chopping it down and killing it to suffer your ghastly attempts at stylish decoration…fffft.

I think the idea of a mourning band is a good one - perhaps wearing one would stop people from constantly expecting one to be jolly all the bloody time. People are impatient for one to 'get back to normal'. Even people who know what's happened ask "what's wrong with you?" - and to the people who don't know, it's so tempting to say…but would be cruel, as they don't REALLY expect you to tell them something awful has happened. Or want you to. I never understand why they actually bother to ask. As you'll notice - I'm a tad peeved right now. The last 3 years have all been a bit much - and this seemed the final straw.

But of course, we trundle on. We smile and laugh and hold conversations that seem utterly meaningless [and quite often are]…and we cry when no-one can see us.

Tuesday, 21 December 2010


and this is what I wrote. But I couldn't stand at the funeral and say it - I would have been a snivelling wreck. As it was I barely managed to hold myself together.


"Funny - today, Dad feels more 'here' than he has for a while for me. Because we are all here because of him. He'd hate that. Too much attention. He wasn't an attention seeking person.

The trouble with Dad was that he was always wandering off. So for us, it is almost as if he is just 'away'…in Ethiopia. Uganda. South Africa. Abu Dhabi. For months at a time sometimes. And he wasn't exactly 'Mr Noisy'. He was a quiet person. A hard working man. It wasn't that he didn't talk a lot; [he did if the subject took his fancy - you couldn't shut him up!] but he wasn't loud. He was very intelligent and he was obsessive about the English language being pronounced and spelt correctly - so I am definitely using spell and grammar check after I type this! I remember him always correcting me when I was younger [and when I was not so young!]. It was a norm in our conversation. He had a perfect grasp of the tongue. I grew grateful for it in latter years, as it made me an excellent proof reader and copy writer. Thanks Dad - all that nagging paid off. Especially the 'rough terrain' vehicle thing - which, having only read the words, I always pronounced as 'rough ter-ee-an'…heh heh - [much to Dad's horror]. By the way, the vehicle in question was Pete's Action Man vehicle!

I remember him giving us our 'places' during the earthquakes in Papua New Guinea. One to hold the fridge, one the carving etc. And I recall him fighting a huge spider with a broom - and the beastly thing would NOT die - the rest of us hid behind a door fainting away as he battled it in his safari shorts, long socks and Caterpillar boots. It kept running up the handle at him! But he prevailed - as Dad's always do…arriving to rescue us when the school bus got stuck in the middle of a rapidly flooding river…taking splinters out - and it didn't hurt…

I recall his massive reel to reel tape of the Beatles - everyone would sit around having a drink and chatting, with the White Album blaring away in the background…and I remember David, the baby at the time, cutting his teeth on empty beer cans, while the Dad's sat around waffling and the Mum's did 'stuff' [like provide food and more beer and control the kids].

Dad was always there to ask things of. Unless it was a domestic - then he's just do the 'ask your Mum' thing. And Mum would say 'ask your Dad'… But if it was a question about something important, well, we didn't ever have an Encyclopaedia Britannica - we didn't need one - we had Dad. And Dad didn't have Google. He just knew stuff.

He was well read, well educated, kind. He was not a complicated man. He was a great Dad. We had everything we ever really wanted - the bikes at Christmas, the holidays, the swimming pool, the pet dog…we travelled, and it made us brave - we had an idyllic childhood spent all over the world - thanks Dad. And thanks Mum - a great team. And an enviable marriage, through good times and hard times. I hope mine lasts as long. 50 years it would have been. Congratulations.

You'll always be in my heart - you always have been; why would that change now?


You see? I did it.

Here's Dad on Pete's chopper - Christmas was always more fun in Africa…it was WARM!!


Monday, 13 December 2010

my eulogy for my father

this last week, I've had many poems and amazing pieces of prose and poetry sent to me - they were all touching. Heart rending even.  They were all beautifully written. But…they were all about someone else, for someone else and written by someone else.

I write a lot of stuff. And now I want to write [and say] something that I feel about the person I knew and loved. My Dad. And my God it's hard. And to compound the issue, I want to speak from both mine and my brothers hearts. Please - pass me a larger stone to push up the hill?

So hard not to fall back on the old adages. So hard not to be trite. But I will try anyway. Forgive me if it's not very entertaining.

This evening I will try to do this - I NEED to do it - but I am still not sure I'll be able to speak at the funeral. No matter how much I want to…thank goodness Dad's brother Ian is doing this for us anyway.

Saturday, 11 December 2010

the wild things

I saw this today and almost fell over laughing - must be funny, I haven't felt like laughing all week. In fact I am a miserable unmotivated Blot on the Landscape right now…so, here's something to cheer us up.

This is JUST what goes on in our house ALL the time at the moment…the Wild Things are causing havoc…and wrecking the joint. 


and I daresay this is what the Christmas Tree would be like as far as Bear is concerned…hmm, perhaps give it a miss this year. Or get the video camera out in preparation for the flying baubles, flying cats and demented FH. He isn't taking very kindly to the Random Shredding of Stuff.

and this is just hilarious. Thank you Simon Tofield

Thursday, 9 December 2010

thank you

People have been sending so many lovely messages, cards and poems to our family. It's hard to read them without crying, and harder to answer them in any sensible fashion - thank you doesn't seem to be enough sometimes. It feels like it gets worn out after you say it 20 times.

But thank you - I know I speak for our whole family here. Thanks for friends, thanks for family - and thanks everyone who has sent support and messages. And mostly, thanks for being there.


This is from a friend in Portugal - a beautiful poem. I wish I had the strength to read it at Dad's funeral, but I know I won't. So I'll just post it here instead.


"There is no death! The stars go down
To rise upon some other shore,
And bright in heaven's jewelled crown
They shine forevermore.

There is no death! The forest leaves
Convert to life the viewless air;
The rocks disorganize to feed
The hungry moss they bear.

There is no death! The dust we tread
Shall change, beneath the summer showers
To golden grain, or mellowed fruit,
Or rainbow-tinted flowers.

poem from FranciscaThere is no death! The leaves may fall,
And flowers may fade and pass away--
They only wait, through wintry hours,
The warm, sweet breath of May.

There is no death! The choicest gifts
That heaven hath kindly lent to earth
Are ever first to seek again
The country of their birth.

And all things that for growth or joy
Are worthy of our love or care,
Whose loss has left us desolate,
Are safely garnered there.

Though life becomes a desert waste,
We know it's fairest, sweetest flowers,
Transplanted into Paradise,
Adorn immortal bowers.

The voice of birdlike melody
That we have missed and mourned so long,
Now mingles with the angel choir
In everlasting song.

There is no death! Although we grieve
When beautiful, familiar forms
That we have learned to love are torn
From our embracing arms--

Although with bowed and breaking heart,
With sable garb and silent tread,
We bear their senseless dust to rest,
And say that they are "dead,"

They are not dead! They have but passed
Beyond the mists that blind us here
Into the new and larger life
Of that serener sphere.

They have but dropped their robe of clay
To put their shining raiment on;
They have not wandered far away--
They are not "lost nor "gone."

Though disenthralled and glorified
They still are here and love us yet;
The dear ones they have left behind
They never can forget.

And sometimes, when our hearts grow faint
Amid temptations fierce and deep,
Or when the wildly raging waves
Of grief or passion sweep,

We feel upon our fevered brow
Their gentle touch, their breath of balm;
Their arms enfold us, and our hearts
Grow comforted and calm.

And ever near us, though unseen,
The dear, immortal spirits tread--
For all the boundless universe
Is Life--there are no dead!"

- John Luckey McCreery

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

goodbye dad

dad My father died very suddenly last week [was it last week already?]. Thursday 2nd December. Five days before his 72nd birthday. He wasn’t sickly. He was fine. He took good care. He'd been for his check up the day before and jovially informed Mum that he would live until he was 90. And I hadn’t spoken to him in a while. Now I regret that so much that there’s a big pain in the middle of me which won’t go away.

On Thursday he decided to go out and sweep the snow off the path so Mum wouldn't slip. Had his lunch, pottered off outside - and the next thing Mum found him lying dead on the path. Paramedics, air ambulance…no-one could help. He was gone. Ischemic heart disease apparently. Personally, I blame the snow. Always hated the damn stuff, now I loath it with a personal passion.

There’s never enough time. Time to talk. Call, write a letter or an email. Visit. Either we’re working, sleeping…something…there’s always an ‘important’ reason to put off that quick contact until tomorrow. Or later. That quick action that says we care has to wait while we do all the things that seem so absolutely dire. And aren't - not really…

And then it’s too late. Now it’s too late. And I am left with plenty of time for regretting.

Dad, like most Dads…is in hardly any photos as he took them. Mostly with people's heads chopped off…but here he is with Mum. This is in South Africa.


When someone dies - we all make time. We all get together, go to the funeral of the person who we didn’t make time to see or talk to when they were alive. We do this without consideration or thought. We will drive through snow and storms or whatever it takes. We will leave work and pets and worries. Because we want and need to. We want to honour them, say goodbye to them.

We need to talk about the person who died and remember all the good things about them. And maybe discuss the irritating things too - but they are also the things that made you love that person. So they are gentle gibes. We laugh about those foibles over bendy egg and cress sandwiches at the wake. Emotions are raw and we perhaps say the things that in other situations, we wouldn’t. Or couldn’t. But should. We really should. We really really should.

The problem is that as long as we know that person is ‘there’, somewhere, we think that there will always be time to get in touch. To say we love them. We forget about mortality. We are complacent.

For me this is unforgiveable in myself. I, of anyone, should know better than to think that life just goes on. I thought I’d learnt a lot these past three years, but patently I didn’t learn enough. I failed.

I didn’t see my Dad a lot. I didn’t talk to him a lot. But I thought he’d always be there. And I always knew if I needed him, or Mum, they WERE there. No matter what. And now I miss him. Because I know he's out of reach forever?

I remember him reading Rudyard Kipling to me, O Best Beloved. They have always been my favourite stories - I can't wait to read them to Grace. And carrying me about on his shoulders. And making the best fried bread EVER for breakfast.

Giving me away at my first wedding [we went in the posh car together - what fun!] - helping me with a biology project where I really wanted to get a 'real' arm from the local ‘Dead People Place’ [I was only 12 - I had no idea what mortuaries really were]. We used card and string instead.

And when he stopped taking sugar in his coffee, I was so impressed [I was about 14], that I did too. He was an artist - he was my inspiration to go to art school. He did a brilliant pencil sketch of our Malamute that I recall vividly. And he made those string pictures with the little nails on painted black board.

I saw the Malamute sketch today at Mum's on the wall. He always wore a St Christopher medal. I saw that today too and I nearly broke down crying. I wanted to steal it. It's one of the things I remember him always having. Just that, his wedding ring and his watch. But always the St Christopher medal. Dad took masses of photographs [his father, Grampy, was a photographer]…slide shows were always good. We have lots of photos he took, as my brother has been archiving them. All our travels all over the world are down to Dad. And recorded in pictures by him.


He was a bit bonkers - here he is with his brother Ian at his 70th birthday lunch - I have no idea why he's pulling that nutty face! He could sew; he always fixed my school shoes. I remember how his glasses would have to go to the end of his nose so he could look over them - sort of through his eyebrows. I remember him rescuing me when I sleepwalked right out of the house. On and on and round and round my mind goes...the Beach Boys on 8 track all the way to Cape Town. Letting me light his cigarettes when he was driving [as he knew I was a sneaky smoker ;) ].

This really reminds me of Dad - got to Get Around…plus, check out the guy on the right - that's real 'Dad dancing' ;)


I keep feeling surreally ok - as if it hasn’t happened. It can’t have happened. Dad has always worked away, so we are used to him being gone for months at a time sometimes. Then it’s like a brick hitting the back of my heart, and I can’t stop crying. I keep thinking of my Mum. I can’t begin to imagine how she feels. They’ve been married for almost 50 years. They were. Married almost 50 years. March would have been their anniversary.

It was Dad’s birthday yesterday. Mum has all these books she picked out for him. And she bought him cigarettes even though she HATES smoking…a treat. For Dad.


Here we all are on Mothers Day. Can't imagine what the FH is up to here! So now I have learnt a new lesson. Do not prevaricate. Don’t put off until tomorrow what can be done today - I was looking forward to calling Dad on his birthday. Birthdays. Always a phone call at the very least. My card was always sent at the last minute because I am useless at the post office. I had the card. One of those big fancy things. I ripped it up in a rage. It’s not like I have another Dad to send it to. I know Dad is sitting up there [with his crossword] telling me to stop being such a drama queen. I know he's somewhere, because yesterday [his birthday] should have been awful, but a whole lot of good things happened - I don't really believe in coincidence. I'm sure it was him.

well, I can’t. Stop being a drama queen. I am so sad. For me. For my poor mum. For my brothers.

Mum... P... D... I do love you all so much. I just never take time to say so....well, I’m saying so now.

And here we all are. A '70s pic. This was so funny. Dad was fuming with Mum and I, as we had one of those laughing/giggling attacks that you just can't stop…as you can see, Mum is almost crying!


Today we went to register the death - I wanted to scream. The registrar was so utterly impersonal, she took so long…she was a total 'jobs worthy'. Mum was chatting and trying to be friendly and brave and cheerful and this woman was just like a block. I lost it when she asked if Mum would mind 'answering some statistical questions'. WTF?? My mum just lost her husband and lifelong friend - why the hell should she answer anything more than she needs? I have a problem with form filling when I'm upset, and it was a miracle we left without me doing something awful. My mum looked so forlorn, and this stupid woman was asking unnecessary questions?? grr.

But leave we did. Calmly. And it took all I had not to burst out crying all day. But I can now. I am dreading the funeral on Tuesday - I don't think I'll be able to hold it together. But really, one has to. Doesn't one?

Sunday, 14 November 2010

the Scar Project - battle scars

I just got home from a long evening of waiting tables…my feet are killing me [or trying to] and I am shattered. But I need to have a space between work and sleep, so I thought I'd pick up my email. LOTS of email as I tend to neglect it these days, as I'm not at the computer so much.

Then I thought I'd just check the blog feeds. And I read a post by Daria.  The video is moving - and this link is also very interesting.

Breast cancer is not about 'cute pink' things. Sort of like Ovarian cancer is not about cute teal things. It's about real women fighting for their lives - and their lives are forever changed by the aftershocks of whatever cancer they have had. The physical scarring, the mental scarring - the constant deliberations about what 'could' or 'might be' after such a life changing event.

To quote from the article: "Breast cancer charities have been very successful with their society balls, pink ribbon days, fun runs, and mass bikini walks. They glamorise breast cancer to the point where the charity is almost dissociated from the disease. The ribbons are a desirable fashion statement, their events peppered with celebrities; they are the place to be if you want to be photographed with the glitterati."

I liked that the writer went back and photographed the billboard - he was that disturbed by the reality of the image.

Interesting that something so horrible can become 'glamorous' in the eyes of the world. But I am sure [I know] that it's NOT in the eyes of the women struck with breast cancer. NO cancer is glamorous. Cancer is repulsive.

This post from Daria. I have copied it straight from her blog:

"According to the website, The SCAR Project is a series of large-scale portraits of young breast cancer survivors shot by fashion photographer David Jay.

The pictures are all of women between the ages 18 and 35. All the ladies are topless and bear the physical scars of breast cancer."

This video is not for the faint hearted. And I am suddenly grateful for my sore feet. At least  am here to HAVE sore feet…

I think a video of the scarring resultant from Ovarian cancer would be a good thing too - the scars will not be as emotive to many, as a scarred belly is not the same as a scarred breast. A scarred breast is a direct hit at a woman's psyche. But they are nonetheless battle scars we wear. Cut open from breast bone to pubic bone - it's a Battle Scar.

Thursday, 11 November 2010

idiots and neighbours

DSC_0075to go back to cancery stuff [ which I've been trying to avoid!] - I am still having sharp and odd pains in my belly. I am sure they are merely adhesions…but I am also thinking that 6 months is a LONG time between check ups. Even though I am so busy running from pillar to post…it weighs on my mind.

I can't quite get my head around it. All the pain is in the left hand side of my lower abdomen. Nothing happened there? Except scraping of the bowel where the cancer had spread from the ovary. Well, seems the bowel didn't think much of that and complains eternally. I hope. It makes me nervous though. Recurrence is never THAT far from my mind. Sadly.

Anyway, onward and upward! Some days, life is full of shit. really - it's infuriating, but sometimes the little things [the really meaningless things] can drive you completely sparko! Take today. I needed to go to the bank, and I needed cat food for the Small Beasties. I like to use small local shops [I am Mrs Anti-Sainsbury's-Taking-Over-The-World] and if the price is right, I'll use them. So off I went to the local 'centre' which has a load of little shops, including a really cool pet shop.

Got my kitten food, bread from the baker and did the banking [ha ha]. Felt rather jolly about the whole day so far.

I got into the car preparing to leave, and there was a woman getting into her small Gold Thing next to me. There was a horrendous wind today. She opened her rear passenger door, and the wind caught it - BANG! Into my rear passenger side panel. With force. I looked over, and she was merrily leaping into her Gold Thing, preparing to drive off. uh - I don't think so!! I leapt out of the car and asked her to stop [she would have had to run me over to leave].

I informed her that she had put a rather large dent in my Beemer. And that I'd like her insurance details please. She said she hadn't dented my car. I was astonished. And cross - and the more cross I become, the more polite and snotty I become. We had 'words'. I tried to explain to her that the obvious large scrape of gold [good grief - a gold car…ffft] paint on my dark blue car was from her door. She wasn't having it. Obviously [in her teeny brain - brain?? what brain??] IF her door had dented my car, there would be paint missing from her door. NOT!! Grr.

THEN she told me not to be 'stroppy'. Oh dear - like a red rag to a bull. Stroppy? And there was me, thinking I was being so restrained as I hadn't actually throttled her…some people have no idea at all about rage. I informed her that if she thought I was being stroppy [what a repulsive word!] she had yet to see true 'stroppiness' and should just push me a little harder in order to find out what it really is.

I think I must have looked quite scary [I tend to go bright white when I am furious], as she then said sorry and asked if I was 'all right'. DOH!! Obviously I was not!!

Eventually I got her phone and name - I hope. Not too serious if she gave the wrong details, as I took a photo of her car reg. And I have contacts in the police. So I will find her if she lied.


The whole point it this - if she'd just apologised, I'd have let it go. Who needs the hassle. It's a dent- there are far worse things, as we know. But she lied. I hate that. It will be interesting to see what happens when I call her for her details. I've had a quote - we will see.

Afterward I went round to my friend Claire - her husband is a brilliant artist and Body Shop person. He had a look at the car [in the pitch dark and rain - had to park under a lamp post!] and is confident it can be repaired for a reasonable amount. Claire supplied a calming glass of wine and lots of really neighbourly and 'friendy' type chat. And some headache tablets. :) I came away feeling much calmer - so lovely to have 'proper' neighbours - people who are there for you when you are at your wits end. Thanks Claire and John.

In the meantime, I have named the Wee Beasties!! Yay me!! This is Tigger Bear [Bear]:


And this is Tiger Lily [Lily]:


Saturday, 6 November 2010

cycle kenya funds and cat news

wvc-kenya this is going to be a lightning post, as I am racing out the door to work - but just had to share this - a friend of Tracey's, Darren, is doing this really amazing thing for me.

He's never even met me, but to help raise funds for the Women v Cancer cycle Kenya, he is selling products on eBay and giving me the profits! Not ME personally, but he'll put the money into the justgiving account.

How kind is that? I am chuffed to bits. Please see the link here if you'd like to buy one. Ovarian Cancer charity mug [it even has my ribbon on it - woo hoo!]. Thanks SO much Darren, and thanks to Tracey too for the intro. T-shirt next, when I have time to get the design sorted.

OC mug

In the meantime, we now know the kittens are GIRLS, yay! So now to find some names that suit them - this morning, lightning and speedy come to mind, as they are like two little rockets racing about!

They seem rather partial to wine ;) Right I'm off, please tell your friends about the cool mug? Thanks!



Wednesday, 3 November 2010

more cats

DSC_0006 DSC_0004 now that they've been here two days, life is settling into a sort of rhythm again. New kittens [these are 11 weeks] are at first scared, then curious, then usually have an upset tummy from the move and different food etc. Ugh. I decided to try boiled chicken on my two - FAIL! Last night, after gobbling it down as if their lives depended on finishing it within 3 seconds, we had Throwing Up All Over The Place evening…poor little things.

So, no more chicken for a while! Both are recovered this morning - racing around like crazy things. They have taken to sleeping on my desk - draped around the Wacom pad. Nice company :)


In the meantime, my tummy is now back to normal [phew] - yesterday I only had to clean one chalet, which is no big deal. Less strain on the old belly muscles and less exhausting in general. Today - major gardening and on Friday [this is hilarious] I will be painting. As in 'Painting and Decorating'…good grief.

Which means I'm a lot less grumpy. Nothing like a bloated, painful stomach to send one into the doldrums. Ridiculous, but true. Pulled muscles? More likely heh heh

Now to try figure out if these kittens are boys or girls…no names until I do!

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

no time…

bloody life is STILL a chaos - no time for blogging, breathing, emailing...aaargh! Try to catch up here on all the goings on. But I probably WILL forget most of them!

One of the days last week was a nightmare. We had to clean 11 chalets. Three of us. One of 'us' was totally not 'with the programme', so basically it was two of us. Plus a hoovering person. Right. Hey ho...We cleaned 11 chalets in six hours. I made 22 single partner in crime made 11 double beds...we cleaned 22 bathrooms etc...fogo!!!

I felt great - until I got home. Then I had KILLING feet and the Dreaded Swollen Belly. Fffft - we all talk about this - it's a horrible thing, as the initial signs of ovarian cancer are a swollen belly etc. And I am aware that it's a norm after such radical surgery. Can be for YEARS afterward according to my surgeon. Bah.

Bugger! So - I was worrying a's been a while since I did 'this kind' of worrying. grr. And a while since I thought about this BS. Having a swollen tummy is upsetting - all we OC girls KNOW about this - but it doesn't make it any easier. To swallow. Deal with. Whatever...

So, whilst rolling a cigarette and looking for my glasses [they are always where I am not] I considered the next bit of this post - and I have to say, bloody ovarian cancer is a pain in the proverbial. We survive...but we worry. Constantly - stupid kind of cancer to get - breast cancer? You can live another 40 years - ovarian? fft - we just have to hope for the best. It's one of those cancers that just creeps back. On various internal bits. Ideally, we don't think about what or when. We just hope for the best.

cat-pics-20.092010-037 And I stood on my glasses!! I don't believe this - my Pradas are now totalled...I dropped them, jumped off the kitchen stool at Shaun's [we were dog sitting last week at their lovely farm - see dogs above, nice and comfy by the Aga] to get them and viola...totalled - FFS!! I jumped ONTO them. I am sooooo tired of having to pay for things unnecessarily. its such a bore...

So. This week - off to the optician for repairs. Then off to buy stuff for my new kittens. woohoo! Sunday is going to be fab - two new kittens!

First photos of them at Annie's;

cat-pics-20.092010-032 cat-pics-20.092010-015 cat-pics-20.092010-017 cat-pics-20.092010-021

Great thing last week - Rachel came down!! So lovely to see her looking really well. And…pronounced completely cured of her cancer…can't get better than that!!

Sunday, 24 October 2010


I forgot about the FH's birthday pressie from Mum and Dad - hoo! An entire CRATE of wine…what more could one ask for!!! ;) The FH has been enjoying his scrummy wine all evening. And yesterday evening too. Me, I'm still slapping back the Jimenez. Wouldn't want to intrude eh? ;)


In fact, I must say, my last post was as confused as I am. I re read it just now. Repetitive and tedious. And completely boring. I have the habit of just posting stuff then  seeing it a day or so later. Sorry! Just blathering on because sometimes that's what I need to do some days.

But I woke up this morning thinking it was Sunday.

Seriously.  It wasn't. It was Saturday. I then had a horrible panic attack, thinking I should be 'somewhere'. The gardening. Or the cleaning. Or Feelgood Ecobeds. Or Dr Debt. PANIC!  Eventually I realised that actually, I had a day off. OMG!! This was after I checked everything in my Outlook calendar. Frantically. I SO hate this chemo brain crap. It makes one into a complete quivering wreck at times - when one wishes to KNOW something…well, we just don't. But we do. But we can't access the information in the brain. It's infuriating and upsetting.

The other thing I NEEDED to remember was that Rachel is coming down - oh, I didn't forget! But I didn't realise which exact day…I thought it was Sunday. It's Monday. Grr.

Well. Anyway. This morning, I immediately went back to bed. I am exhausted. And it's so cold.  So I decided to make the most of time that wasn't filled with 'stuff'. I have a great book. One of those that you can't put down. So I read it. And I'm still reading it…

But I am also still thinking about all the things I have to 'do'. Ah…no rest for the wicked….back to the book….

Friday, 22 October 2010

reasons to be cheerful part 01

center-patch first - the Hells Angels vector worked. Yippee! And so did the Tribal Tattoo vector. Getting my head around Illustrator more every time I do a job for John. Excellent - he pays me, and I learn things. He is amazing- anything you want spraying or sticking to your vehicle - he's the man. Amazingly talented.

So. This weeks peeve is PINKNESS. see this article here. Food for thought. But to be fair, the Breast Cancer Girls do really 'get it out there'. Well. We Ovarian Cancer girls need to  do the same.

What's been happening here? My mum had her 70th birthday! Imagine - I am so hoping to see mine. Of course I was working….bah and humbug, But she had the pressie she wanted so that's always good! Apparently it arrives this week - waiting for pics!

Apart from chalet bashing, yours truly is now working for Dr Debt, Debt Management Training trying to complete the 100 page manual, then convert it to a PowerPoint show [this is taking ages!! Talk about under quoting ugh] - I finally finished the vectors hoorah!!! And in between, I've been uploading a few more products to Made by Hands of Britain for feelgoodecobeds and doing sundry stuff for him.

On the same day as Mumsy's birthday, it is the FH's birthday. Bad. I didn't even wake up before he left for work [exhausted as usual], to say Happy Birthday :(

BUT I did manage to get a a card and a bottle of Chablis [his favourite wine] - and he had the 'Giant' bike as his pressie. It's the most amazing bike!

So, for his birthday the kids arrived in force, and we had lunch in the garden - pasta, wine, olives …you name it, we had it. And we went to the beach. This is us at the beach. Posers ;)

DSC_0002 Slight interruption - seems we have vermin in the attic. one LARGE vermin. stomps noisily & scratches madly and is now trying to chew it's way through the floor [evidence this morning in the lounge!]. I have investigated the attic with the CSI torch method...found a Mac + keyboard and mouse, a Kenwood chef + 600 attachments, camping stove, velvet curtains [blech] and sundry other goods. NO creatures...hmm, what to do?

well...busy! so, over and out!

Saturday, 9 October 2010

an ordinary day

well this is my usual day at the moment - awake at 6.00 [this is after waking up every hour on the hour during the night - grr, insomnia so SUCKS]. Go back to sleep until 7.00 [yay - lucky me!]. Have my coffee in bed at 7.30 [the FH brings me a coffee every day - even luckier me]. Get up - straight to the pc, toast with Marmite in hand. Onto email - answer, delete and file whatever has arrived since my last login. Get onto MBHOB site - upload some more Feelgoodecobeds products. Send lots of emails about the glitches in the back office...some things don't work yet, but it's a new site and the people running it are amazingly helpful.

Then. Off the chalet bash for a few hours. Usually 5 hours. Or to garden for a few hours. Weather permitting. Then home again to deal with whatever new problem Dr Debt has and to do a bit more work on the ever growing manual. Today's was a Facebook advert - shockingly bad. WE were not amused. Sent a new layout and logo - hopefully we will get a revised version soon. This is what it should look like:


Then off to spinning class - yesterday was fab. The FH came to class! Good fun doing it together. Then home again, bath, dinner, wine - collapse…

Usually amongst all this I'd do the odd blog post, but Windows Live Writer kept conking out EVERY time I tried to add a hyperlink. Grr. Searched Windows help [help? right…]. No luck. Searched google - still nothing sensible. Uninstalled and reinstalled - STILL had the same error [how is that possible?]. Then I came across this blog post. Hoorah!! Usually I hate changing files on my computer - but it WORKED! Woo hoo! Thanks that man!

Right - off to do some gardening after I scan a skull with wings for transformation into a vectored file later…never a dull moment!

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

liveSTRONG day

Check out this post on winosandfoodies - enter if you can. Me, I'm useless at cooking / baking things…but even if you don't fancy cooking yellow food [or LiveSTRONG day], it's a cool site.

This is a direct copy / paste of part of the winosandfoodies post. Go there to see the zillions of yellow things from 2009. I never knew there was so much yellow food in the world! And go here to see what Janell is up to too…

Here's the winosandfoodies post:



"More than 12 million people worldwide are diagnosed with cancer and eight million will die from the disease each year. Worldwide, cancer will be the leading cause of death by 2010.

I don't know if I'll ever be free of cancer. Thanks to modern drugs I live with cancer. Drugs that weren't available when my father died of cancer in 2003. Once a fortnight I receive a 30 minute infusion of Avastin. It blocks the blood supply to the tumours, inhibiting their growth. It works differently to chemotherapy and has some side effects, but is easier on the body than chemo.  I consider myself  fortunate to live in a country where the drug is available. Not everyone is so lucky.

Which is why it is  important to raise awareness of cancer issues  globally. This year the Lance Armstrong Foundation went global. To date organisations, corporations, advocates and world leaders from 51 countries have made a commitment to fight cancer. 

For those of us living with cancer we live with hope. Hope....that someday there will be a cure....the chemotherapy will destroy the cancer cells and leave our good  cells alone......we won't need more surgery. Most of all we live with  hope in our hearts...... hope we will grow old with our partners, hope we will see our children grow up,  hope we will enjoy a lifetime of family celebrations and holidays, hope will be around to celebrate birthdays and weddings and new babies and friendships.

The challenge is on for 2010. Let's see if we can get entries from all 51 countries."



Tuesday, 28 September 2010

it's only Tuesday…

Busy week this week - today I was chalet bashing - tomorrow I am on Dr Debt's manual with a vengeance; and doing the Feelgoodecobeds postcard addressing…aaargh, using Excel and Word to make a mail merge…painful. To say the least.

Wednesday and Thursday I am gardening - dependant on the weather of course. The Ide garden appears to have a lot of bagged topsoil that needs moving, plus loads of Winter Pansies to be potted up.

Winter Pansies

The other garden needs everything doing still! Hello frozen fingers…and Fagin gloves!


Credit: Chris McNamara

Chalet Bashing Friday morning, then waiting tables in the afternoon - I love doing that. It's fun - you meet the sweetest people. They are 'out for dinner'. They want to have a good time - the majority of them do. And if the people you are waiting on are enjoying themselves, well, so do you. No brainer. Saturday, chalet bashing again - then WEEKEND!! Woohoo! Probably I shall sleep until 10.00 on Sunday - that might get rid of the beastly cold which is hanging about still. Grr. Snot city here…ugh. Plus revolting coughing. I'm a delight, really…

And quite some fun this week blogging on Ovacome, and Facebook phoned me to see if I'd like to be a candidate for some TV thing called Daybreak. All about the 'Facebook for Good' thing. Well, yes, why not? Actually all the girls want to go on Oprah, but Daybreak could be ok? heh heh. And the Sky TV thing, Real Lives was repeated today [and I forgot about it until too late to tell anyone - I am useless]. Lots of opportunities for getting ovarian cancer awareness out there - Bring It On!!

Plus it appears that my cool friend in Oz has posted me £40.00 AUD for the Women v Cancer fund!! Woop! Now THAT'S cool! Will just wait to receive it, then add it to the justgiving page total.

A good week so far! Still have insomnia, but what the hell - you can't have everything right?

Monday, 27 September 2010

Black Tie Charity Christmas Ball

Fingle Glen Golf Hotel, Tedburn St Mary, Devon


Includes a scrumptious two-course dinner, a welcome drink on arrival, a fun festive quiz, a raffle, a 'silent auction' and disco until 01.00am.

Tickets are ONLY £22.00 each! The proceeds will be divided between CLIC Sargent, Tedburn St Mary School and Cheriton Bishop Playgroup.

Last year's event raised a massive £3516.50 and tickets sold out well in advance. Contact Lisa on lisa.p.singleton@btinternet [dot] com or call her 01647 61580 or 07970 792060.

Quick! ....only 9 tickets left now!!!!

Sunday, 26 September 2010

health [mine!]

megan-wonder-woman I was thinking today - whilst stripping beds…[as you do!] some of you may be wondering as to the state of my health. As averse to the state of my life. Some of you have asked. Thank you. No, I'm not dead - just a lazy blogger ;)

And especially all you girls in the midst of chemo - all the girls I know OUT of chemo [and they're a lot!]. The people who follow this blog.

Well, I FEEL great. Like Wonder Woman - I'm not, but I feel like that, having survived [touch wood!] ovarian cancer for now. I am running about like a Blue Arsed Fly…fund raising and looking for work. And working! Doing mainly manual labour right now, gardening, cleaning, waiting on. And actually, I love it - it's helped me lose all the steroid weight, and I've met lots of people through it too. Yay - bring on networking!

The reason I feel like Wonder Woman is because I never thought I'd be able to do any of this. I was so weak and frail after chemo that I just felt that was it. I'd be 2 stone overweight and a weed for ever. Well, not so. Hoorah!

Plus I have a couple of graphic design jobs which keep me in touch and up to date with what I consider my 'real' work. Not that cleaning and gardening aren't - it's just that I suppose I am so used to being a graphic designer that it's hard to think of myself as anything else.

Regarding cancery stuff - I can honestly say that at the moment, I don't think about it an awful lot. I still do think about it - no brainer there. Hence this post. But not every second of every day. Mainly if something goes wrong - like today.

I have a horrible cold. It moved to my chest this morning so I was coughing like a grampus all day, which wrenched my stomach. Oops! Scarring doesn't like that and all afternoon I was nauseous. And there was pain on my left side where the adhesions were. Maybe there's still adhesion there - who knows? It's gone now, so who cares? But it's silly things like that that make you think stupid thoughts.

But the cough is going - and so are the thoughts…4 more months till I start going seriously bonkers ;)

Friday, 24 September 2010




fogo - last night was frightful! the absolute WORST night's sleep [or, rather, NON sleep] that I've had since chemo. I woke up literally every 30 to 40 minutes. Can't say there wasn't variety mind you - it was one of the following: hot flash. freezing cold sweat. coughing my guts up or drowning in snot. jumping legs. dying of thirst. you name it - it woke me. and in the interim - mad and vivid dreams so that when I DID wake up, I was in The Land of Confusion….bah.

At 4.15 this morning, I gave up. After doing the 'Whirling Dervish' impression in my duvet, I had had enough and got up and sneaked downstairs. Had a ciggie in the kitchen [warm feet as we have underfloor heating - cold head as I had the back door open...perfect!] then scoped out Facebook. Imagine…totally miserable through lack of sleep…all bleary eyed [I'm sure!]. Arrive at my Facebook wall to find a kind chap [Phil Daysh ] had given the final £35 that allows me to qualify for the Woman v Cancer cycle!!  Whoa!! Thanks that man!!

The fellow doesn't even know me! I asked him a few weeks ago to lend me some trestle tables for the car boot, after being introduced by my friend Claire Hooper. He agreed, then I didn't need them. Now he does this. Amazing how generous people are and have been.


You are the best. All of you.

The last week or so have been brilliant as far as funds go, as my brother Pete started a run on my Justgiving page; he is doing a 10k run on the 3rd October and all the donations go to me. His friends have been fab! Bring on the West Ham peeps. So he has been a great help to get me to the total. Thanks Pete's Friends - and especially Pete! :)

In the meantime, I caught the 'Airplane Germs' Cold. Grr. Snot for Africa. And today, just when I needed to sleep for 10 hours, I had to chalet bash for 6. Oh well - surely last nights spinning class plus today's bed making extravaganza [14 beds plus 4 x 2 bed houses?]will help sweat out the germs?? Hope so! As it is I am sniffing, coughing and generally being grotesque. Hmm - do I care? Well, no, not a jot. Actually. It'll go. I shall survive. Oh, and that would be without having 'time off work'.

As it is, I am trying to get as TIRED as possible before going to bed this evening.  Lets see if it helps. Would rather like a nights sleep!!

Thursday, 23 September 2010

this week

last weekend I went to see my besties. And it was brilliant - spent time just talking, eating wonderful food, drinking excellent wine and generally chilling out.

It was a very relaxing 3 days. And thanks to them, I came home feeling much more 'together'. The reason I went to visit was to see my darling friends - one of which has had a hideous and hurtful experience. It was for ME to go and be supportive. But as usual, I was the one who was looked after like a princess. But I did try!

The only bad things were being delayed [as usual!] and that the FH couldn't come. Too expensive - but he merrily booked MY ticket for me anyway - not caring at all. Darling man.

This is a wonderful place…a beach hut - sitting on top of a sand dune. We had marvellous weather and were able to sit outside in those chairs from lunchtime until after midnight - it was so warm! I have a suntanned face!

iphone pics 20.092010 006

And this is the view at breakfast time…fabulous, calming, empty beach. Had sardines for lunch. Super. The simple things are always the best. A 5 star hotel would not have been nicer than this!

In the meantime, I have had slight problems with the Botox palaver - the left side of my face is immobile. NOT great for smiling! In fact rather grotesque, as the left side of my mouth pulls downward. Ugh. But it'll wear off. Wouldn't it be nice if everything horrid eventually wore off?

Plus it's tipping down here- - no gardening today!

Oh, and all ovarian cancer types - go here and fill in this survey please…

Thursday, 16 September 2010


As we know, in the States it's ovarian cancer awareness month. Here in the UK, it's in March. Odd. But it gives us a chance to shout about 'being AWARE' twice as much and from both sides of the pond ;)

And this morning I noticed this site. I haven't quite worked out how one uses it yet, but they gave me such a nice shout I thought I'd reciprocate. Oh and also to nick the Kelly Ripa video - we love her, she is constantly raising money with Electrolux for the OCRF.

Go here and try this virtual steaming thing - every time you do, Electrolux donates $1 to the OCRF fund. Or visit the site - you could win a washer dryer!

Oh, and while you're bouncing about the internet on all these links, please go here too - I'm not Kelly Ripa, but I am trying my best to raise K4 for research into women's cancers…ovarian, breast and cervical. If you can, please help me reach my target?  You won't win a washer dryer mind you…


a post at last!

I know I haven't really posted for an age [awareness posts don't really count as 'posts' do they?] - and I'm not apologising, because mostly I blog when I am stressed out. It's a brilliant venting place for me. Much to Some People's disgust. But there you go - each to his own eh?

Happily this isn't a 'venting' post at all - I just thought I'd catch everyone up with my little life before someone decided I'd dropped dead! And it's difficult, as SO much has been going on. So, I will try to précis.

First I did the event at the Port Royal [yep - fund raising still!]. Then I did the posters for the Cystic Fibrosis event at the Port Royal too. And we went - it was such fun. Little yellow ducks all over the place! And of course, the usual fab bbq. Oh, and some random swans wondering WHAT was going on?!

DSC_0020Next event was the Boot Sale. Oh ghastly - up at 4.30 and off to freeze our butts off in the queue until 7.15!! Er - what? Anyway, the torture was worth it, as I made £85.00 and Vicky made £60.00. Better than a poke in the eye with a plastic daffodil…

DSC_0009Then I've been having these 'days'…one of them was a particular cracker - first, at about 7.30 in the morning I was asked to quote on [and got] a freelance design job from my friend John. On the same day, Feelgoodecobeds sold a bed and two bedside tables through a friend of mine, Jo - of which I earn a percentage. Then it turned out that my fellow blogger and friend, another Jo won the Port Royal lottery prize!! And [and this was getting a bit mad] I was in the local  paper - the Express and Echo, AGAIN - they seem to be trying to help me [they published my justgiving address etc]. How cool is that?? And, near the end of the day, we sold a duckboard through Amazon!

And last, but certainly not least [on that day], I reached 62% of my fundraising target through my friend Lins -  way to go. It was amazing and exhausting having so many good things happen in one day. Not normal right? But very nice and I had a great day!

In the interim I have been battering away at the chalets and gardens, but doing bits and pieces of graphic design for sundry peeps. All good. Must converse with the accountant before I sink into total chaos…I've missed my spinning class for 4 weeks!! Shriek! The next class is going to be torture.

We had the G'daughter here for a week. There was no WAY I was going to spinning while she was here. Such wasted time.

                      DSC_0088 I had events. I had appointments. Of which one was The Face. My synkinesis, the result of Bells Palsy, has always driven me a bit mad.Well, a week ago Thursday I had a visit to the Botulinum clinic. NOT an easy decision after conversations regarding the likely collapse of my face once more, plus the ghastly idea of an injection into my eyeball to cure the Crocodile Tears. But, so far so good - no improvement really, and only a bit of facial drop so far. And not too much pain yet. Maybe next time he can be more accurate.It only lasts 3 months after all.

And I broke my toe on Saturday night  [that made the boot sale SUCH fun…er. NOT!]. My toe has turned black and blue. Hmm…message to self - be MORE CAREFUL!

And my brother Pete is doing a run for me!! All the funds from his run go to my Women v Cancer fund! Yay - thanks Pete!!

So. Life is good. Hard work, lots of friends - hardly thinking about recurrence unless something stupid happens [which it does, but it seems easier to deal with now?]

And tomorrow I am off to visit my BFF's!!  Woohoo!