Tuesday, 19 January 2016

2016 a New Year and a new challenge...

With the mental barrier that was Christmas now well out of the way, the very real prospect of again doing battle with Pseudomyxoma Peritonei and another stay at Basingstoke looms large in my mind.

The only analogy that I can use to describe how I feel about the prospect of traversing 2016 is that I feel like a man stepping onto a frozen lake. In the distance I can just make out the faint silhouette of the shoreline through the mist and spin-drift but to get there I have to cross the frozen wilderness with the very real danger that I could drop through the ice at some point in my journey. Sounds like a scene from Dante’s Inferno, in this instance the devil watching on is Pseudomyxoma Peritonei!!

The Christmas break was subdued, it became clearly apparent that this re-diagnosis is affecting the family far more than any other has done in the past. Tracey is keeping a brave face but is worried, that much I can see. Jess and Chloe are that bit older now and understand far more about my situation. Before we could “protect” them from what was going on around them but not this time.

 I too have found myself thinking about things more, even dreaming about it. I can’t help but wonder how many times we have to go through this? Will it ever stop? There also has to be a limit to how many times this type of surgery can be done, be it my body’s ability to cope or whether or not surgery is an option? With every surgery I go through the odds must stack higher against me.

 At present it does look like surgery is an option. However this surgery could be another very big operation depending on what the surgeon finds when he opens me up. I also wonder at what life might be like post op. So far I have come through each operation relatively unscathed. Hopefully it will be the same this time around…

The latest news is that I have an appointment at Basingstoke and North Hampshire hospital on the 29th January. At this appointment we will meet with Ben Cresswell. Ben often works with the Psuedo team and on the Hospital website it states

He is a specialist in surgery for liver and pancreatic cancers and also has an interest in complex multi-organ resections for cancers that have spread elsewhere within the abdomen (such as the lymph nodes and soft tissues).
He has a research interest in keyhole surgery, critical care and cancer treatment and also has a keen interest in education.  He is a past-president of the Association of Surgeons in Training and a past council member of the Royal College of Surgeons of England and the Association of Surgeons of Great Britain and Ireland.”

I am hoping that at the meeting we will learn exactly what the plan is and when I can expect the surgery? This way we can start to plan around it.

In preparation for my hospital stay I am again focusing on getting fit. Whist I am no longer able to run because of the surgery on my back last year I have now started swimming twice a week and hitting the gym as often as I can. My goal is to get my cardiovascular system in as best shape as possible, build strength and generally be as healthy as I can before being admitted.

So for now I just have to wait until the 29th to see what will happen….