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I'm Carole, living in London, happily married and mum to two amazing boys.I was diagnosed with Stage 3 Rectal Cancer in April 2010. Surgery took place in November 2010 and I now have a permanent colostomy...Spinal mets were then diagnosed in October 2011...In January 2012 I was told of further spread to the hip area (multiple lesions)..My life expectancy is now 6-9 months. Walk alongside me on the last part of my experience with this..

Friday, 25 June 2010

End of Week 3 Radiotherapy....

Today was my 15th session of Radiotherapy and I (somehow) made it to the end of the third week...:-)

This morning when I got up I wasn't going to go for the treatment today because my bum hurt so much, I'd had virtually no sleep (certainly not proper sleep anyway, more disturbed 'dozing' really), doing everything hurt, standing - sitting - bending - making a cup of tea - going to the loo - literally EVERYTHING I did was uncomfortable so I went into 'defiance' mode and decided (like a grumpy 5 yr old child) I'm NOT going, so there!

Walked Dj to school (somehow) and Nayla (Dj's friend Aatif's mum) walked back with me and asked how I was getting on. Told her about the pain, soreness and that everything hurt. She said to go round to her place in an hour and she'd cut me off some of her (magical) Aloe Vera plant and I could give it a go and see if it helped abit. After using just ONCE the soreness started to subside within 5 minutes - total relief from the persistent and ongoing discomfort.
So I DID go to my Radiotherapy appointment after all....

After being zapped for the 15th time, I met with one of the Clinical Radiotherapy staff and we discussed the discomfort and damage being caused.
She said she was 'quite taken aback' by Dr's advice on Tuesday to use Sudocrem as it is completely useless in Radiotherapy damage and sometimes makes things feel MORE uncomfortable.
She asked me if I was sure he'd said Sudocrem not Aqueous Cream - I said I wasn't just sure, I was 100% positive because he'd been really clear about stopping the Aqueous Cream as 'it's not exactly helping much' and changing to Sudocrem.
She then checked my notes and found he'd written it in there as well.

She then told me that she would never suggest Sudocrem as it's a barrier cream and not suitable for the job at all, I told her about using the Aloe Vera plant earlier in the day and she said that was a great idea, far more useful than using a barrier cream!
She had a look at the sore area/s and said it was definitely being caused by the Radiotherapy and wasn't a new outbreak of the Shingles virus - so at least there's some good news going on :-)

So the plan now is to continue with the Aloe Vera plant and she's also given me a local anaesthetic gel and suggested I could use it during the night if the stingy pain disturbs my sleep OR I could use before using the loo to stop the manic stinging/burning pain immediately afterwards and use the Aloe Vera plant during the day for general relief. Either way a combination of the two is what she's suggesting and leave the Sudocrem alone!

We had a chat about my new healthy eating plan and I told her about my book that my sister sent to me - she thought it was all positive and a good idea to try to get myself as healthy as possible by eating well.

Then she asked how I felt about not having the Chemo. Told her I was relieved and felt better off without it, one poison at a time in my system feels more than enough for me and she smiled and said 'I couldn't agree with you more'.
It's funny because I really expected at least one person to say 'You really should reconsider the Chemo, you're not giving yourself the best chance etc etc' BUT Dr, Clinical Radiotherapy staff and Radiology staff have all said 'Think you're doing the right thing'...makes you wonder if they just give it for the sake of giving it really.

So today turned out to be not such a bad day after all.

I've cried loads of times this week but it really was just because the pain was really becoming unbearable. I'll have a much more positive week next week now I've got a solution to it - apologies to everyone left feeling upset by seeing me upset, I do try to stay positive and in control but it's not always possible.

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