Sunday, 14 August 2016

Keep calm and carry on...

So here we are now well into August and the summer rapidly disappearing before our very eyes. Soon the long hot days will give way to the golden browns of autumn before winter finally and inevitably holds the land tightly in its silent, blue death grip.

The summer for me has been great. The “watch and wait” decision after my last CT scan freed me from the shackles of Pseudomyxoma for a few brief months and I have grabbed the opportunity with both hands.

We have had some great days out as a family, walking in the Forest of Dean and in the Mendip hills. Days at the seaside at Weston Super Mare and meeting family for rounders on Frenchay common. We have met friends for drinks by the river and attended local festivals. We have a week off soon with lots more great days out planned and Tracey and I celebrate our 20th wedding anniversary at the end of the month!

                                              The Forest of Dean

For the first time in a while I have had no health issues hanging over me. My back has recovered well from the operation nearly a year ago and the fourth anniversary of my second de-bulking surgery at Basingstoke hospital has just passed.

Since January I have been swimming 1000m twice a week on my lunch break and only in the last few days been given the OK by by GP to try some running again. I’ve enjoyed days out fishing, relaxing in my favourite spot on a beautiful quiet lake just up the road. My little bit of paradise. I’m ready to return to some proper caving. I feel well, I feel alive, I feel like my old self before Psuedomyxoma.

                                              My little piece of paradise.

But part of me feels like I’m living a lie. I’m reluctant to let myself get lured into false hope that things are returning to normal, that I can be normal, that we can live a normal carefree life as a family. Because behind this facade of happy summer days, deep in the darkest recesses sits a 7mm long demon, resting quietly, biding its time, hugging my bile duct.

Who knows how long it will be before we have to tackle this demon head on again? My up coming CT scan in October will no doubt tell us if we can continue to enjoy life or if we once again have to prepare for more treatment. I look around and see so many people around me fighting this disease, some doing well, some not so well and some despite putting up the bravest of fights succumbing to this awful disease;Pseudomyxoma Peritonei. 

So for now, with the final throws of summer still to enjoy and with the CT scan in October looming fast its a case of “keep calm and carry on…”. For who knows what the future will hold?


  1. Thank you for the stark honesty and update of your invaluable blog...
    My hubby was diagnosed with PMP 4 wks ago and we're currently waiting for our 1st appt at Basingstoke, so to read through your 'journey' from the beginning has been truly inspiring,positive,hopeful and yes, scarey at times!but above all l applaud
    your frank honesty....
    So THANK YOU , and long may you remain well!
    Jan Cheetham

  2. Fantastic news Dave, can I get my running partner back now?

    1. Hi Barrie, it will be a while before I'm ready to get back to where I left off. That 2.6 miles yesterday was hard work and my legs are very stiff today! LOL! To think we would think nothing of a hilly five miler on a lunchbreak! Honestly though, have to take it really steady. Any sign of problems and I'll have to admit defeat and throw in the towel.........and then buy a road bike!

  3. Hi Jan, thank you so much for your kind words and I'm glad that you have found my blog site helpful. I'm sorry to hear of your husbands diagnosis but rest assured that you are in great hands with the team at Basingstoke. If you have any questions or think I may be able to help you in any way then please do not hesitate to make contact using the mail me option below. Good luck with your upcoming appointment at Basingstoke. Dave

  4. Thanks Dave . Doesn't sound like it's going to be a quick novel....more War and Peace from what l'm reading on the PMP forums and your blog!
    Onwards and upwards eh! ��

  5. Dave, Sounds like you've had an idyllic summer! Here, across the pond, I have had a summer of tests (annual CT scan, mammogram, colonoscopy) with the results of "all clear"! Also, lots of grandchildren time, gardening, swimming, and sunset gazing. Much to be thankful for. Will be thinking of you in October. Nancy

  6. Hi Nancy, Great to hear from you! So pleased to hear that you have the all clear once again, fantastic news! Sounds like you have been using your time very wisely. Nothing beats quality time with the family. I'll keep you posted with progress this end. Despite having this awful thing lurking inside I am very thankful that I am otherwise well and able to live a perfectly normal life. There are many other people out there with PMP who are far worse off than me. Look forward to hearing from you again. Dave

  7. Thank you for sharing your husband diagnosed with pmp in April at the age of 36.we are in Austalia and will have op in December.find your blog so helpful Gives me hope thank you and wish you to remain well.

  8. Hi Vasiliki, Thank you for making contact and I am glad that you have found my blog useful. I'm sorry to hear of your husbands diagnosis. I was 39 when I was first diagnosed after my appendix perforated. I'm glad the blog site gives you some hope. I am a very active person and have remained active after my treatment. I still walk regularly (more of that in my next post!), I swim twice a week and have recently started running again after recovering from a non PMP related back operation. I'm lucky enough that I have no restrictions as to what I eat only the volume (I can't now manage as big a meal as I used to). Life can get back to normal post treatment.
    Keep me up dated with you progress and I wish you well in your journey. If you think that I may be able to help in any way or offer some advice then please do not hesitate to make contact via the e mail me form below. Best wishes, Dave