Thursday, 24 December 2015

Merry Christmas

So another eventful year has passed and we find ourselves in the festive season with a New Year looming. For me the 2015 started full of promise, I planned to get more caving done, more fishing done and generally enjoy the outdoors. Unfortunately fate had other ideas and the prolapsed disc I suffered in March meant that most of the summer and good weather had passed before I was fixed in late August/ early September.

Next followed the bad news from my annual CT scan that for the third time I faced another positive diagnosis for Pseudomyxoma Peritonei! Whilst we are all becoming pretty thick skinned and used to dealing with this kind of news the initial reaction is still exactly the same as the first time I was diagnosed. I have become good at compartmentalizing my emotions, knowing that I won’t hear anything more regarding what the plan is for treatment until the New Year I have locked this away in the back of my mind and will only open the drawer when I need to. Day to day life continues, my work keeps me very busy which helps and I fully intend to enjoy this Christmas at home with the family and worry about what might be in the New Year.

 That said, a third diagnosis chips away at the resolve of even the strongest of us. Will I ever beat this awful disease or is my fate only following one course? Looking at communication between the various consultants at Basingstoke Hospital early indications are that surgery is an option in my case. So good news and bad news. Good news that there does appear to be some treatment available for me but the operation again would be a big one with all the associate risks and the uncertainty of what life would be like post op. Of course, things could change depending on the findings of the more detailed MRI or further down the line what the surgeons find when they go in. We’ll worry about that when the time comes.

So for now, the next few days are all about enjoying Christmas and time with the family. It’s about appreciating what we have around us and those that are closest to us. There are many more people out there far worse off than ourselves whether it’s facing a terminal illness, homelessness, our homes flooded at Christmas or spending it in a refugee camp in Europe. So when your sat enjoying your Christmas dinner, exchanging gifts or sipping a sherry in front of the fire, stop, take a breath and look around you and be thankful. For that is what Christmas is really all about.

Merry Christmas and a happy New Year to you all!