Sunday, 4 May 2014

An anniversary, a publication, a visit and a close encounter with a "donut"

Three weeks since Steve finished the Vansel drug trial and the side effects continue to remind us what his body has been through.  He still hasn't needed to shave much - facial hair seems to have stopped growing.  It hasn't of course, but one shave now lasts several days.  

Another surprising development is that the hair on Steve's head has started to fall out - not in great clumps to make him look bald, but a smattering of hairs on the pillow after a night's sleep, or over his top at the end of the day.  

We're not sure whether that's because the drugs are still in his system and have yet to be broken down and flushed out completely, or because there is a delay in the body's response to the way the drugs block the signals which tell cells to grow and divide.  Or maybe it's something completely different....But it's worth mentioning when Steve returns for his post-trial check up the week after next.

Tiredness continues, but not enough to keep us housebound on our anniversary on 1 May.  We didn't get up before dawn to go to the May morning celebration celebrations, but we did get out for lunch at a wonderful community owned pub and restaurant called The Seven Stars on the green at Marsh Baldon.

From there is was only a short distance to Harcourt Arboretum, where we were greeted by the resident peacocks and swathes of bluebell woods in full bloom - magic!  

The half day out was about all Steve could manage, but at least we celebrated our anniversary doing something special. Strange to think that when the photos below were taken on our wedding day, in all likelihood, Steve had already inhaled the asbestos fibres which led to his mesothelioma diagnosis in 2009.  Recognise Steve under the long hair and beard?

The weekend brought good news - my picture of Steve standing in front of a London mural was published in Saturday's Guardian Weekend Magazine, one of the selections for the theme "Draw".

Later that day, we were joined by our son Jack visiting from Bristol and enjoyed catching up with his news and future plans over a walk to a riverside pub for a glass of wine, followed by a meal at home cooked by master chef Steve.

That's the anniversary, the publication and the visit in the title of today's blog.  So what's the close encounter with a "donut"?  

The donut is the Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scanner at the Nuffield Orthopaedic Centre.  For a change, it wasn't Steve getting a scan but me, in the hope that it will reveal why my lower back/pelvis has been giving me pain for several years which is now getting worse.  The radiologist said he could see some impingement on the sciatic nerve (the cause of the the pain) and took an extra scan as a result. We'll have to wait 7-10 days for the result.  

On the way out of Radiology, we caught sight of two of our artworks which we had given to the hospital on semi-permanent loan...had almost forgotten about them, but there they were, ready to cheer people up!  Steve's is the anemone and mine the sunflower (designed to be hung horizontal, rather than vertical...but what the hell?! )

After the scan as we discussed what had happened, it brought back horrible memories of Steve's chest X-ray in 2009.  We had thought it was routine, only to be referred right there and then to a consultant to discuss the results, rather than going home.  At least that didn't happen today....However, whatever the cause of the problem, I'm hoping it's not serious and that it's something that can be put right with minimal intervention. I've got a meso warrior to look after!

No comments:

Post a Comment