We all want to be independent, don’t we?

 ‘ Not relying on others for support, care, or funds; self-supporting’. This is the dictionary definition of independence, in the term that I want to talk about today. I was prompted to write this post when I saw an older gentleman in a wheelchair, being accompanied to hospital, by his two adult daughters. They were organising his appointments, sitting with him while he waited for the doctor, then taking him along for his tests and then going to collect his medication. One of the daughters was telling me that he kept talking about his life before his illness which meant he had to go into a wheel chair. She said to me, ” Do you know what he misses most”? I said, “I do, it’s his independence! ” She laughed, as she

Constant fatigue

Constant fatigue

I spent the afternoon at hospital yesterday.I left home at 1130am and returned at 530pm. I went by train, which is a lot less hassle than driving, cheaper also! I had several things to do, whilst I was there. I was visiting a friend of mine, who had been taken unwell. I then had a business meeting, followed by my checkup, a visit to the pharmacy, and some business with the charity office. It was a lovely warm day, but by the time I had done all of those things and was walking to the station, I was absolutely worn out!! I am now 56, and until my diagnosis, had never been ill for a significant period. I had worked all the hours God gave me, and spent my spare time

Family and friends,so important in our lives.

I am involved in various different cancer environments in an average week and meet a lot of people, at different stages of their journey. Some just starting out, and some like me, an old hand! Some are accompanied by family and friends, others on their own. The people that I have spoken to on this issue, have very contrasting views. There are also different cultural views too. A hospital visit, can be quite a daunting prospect at the best of times, so I can understand why people would want the comfort and support that a friend or relative could provide. In some cultures it seems like a lot of family members attend, with the patient, for added support. My personal view was very different to that at the start.I was always

Companionship through adversity.

As I have mentioned previously, on the whole I am a lucky man. Apart from my illness, most other things that I have been involved with, have gone better than I could have hoped. Where I am most lucky, is my group of friends. Those of you who know me are aware that I am not a shy guy, and am always happy to chew the fat with people I have just met. Some people find striking up a conversation with someone you don’t know can be quite awkward.Not me! I’m really interested in what makes people tick, and I view it that if you are both in the same place, you have something in common and a place to start the conversation! With my job, I travelled around a lot

My birthday is a key milestone

My birthday is a key milestone

Today is my birthday. Happy days I here you cry!! I didn’t mention it for more cards and presents, just that it has a greater significance in my life, since my diagnosis. I had just turned 51, and once I was told my prognosis was poor, I really did believe that I wouldn’t see another birthday. I couldn’t believe that if things didn’t go my way, I would be dead within 6 months. So many things that I would never do again, and as I had just celebrated my birthday, I didn’t see how I could be celebrating another one! I distinctly remember talking to my wife about it. Once all the treatment programme was put into place, and it was agreed that I needed a bone marrow transplant, which was due at

Fame, cancer, and the media.

Since my own diagnosis in 2007, and my extremely limited knowledge on the subject of cancer, I have an eternal thirst to learn more about this thing that has invaded my body.This disease that can bring down a very healthy person so quickly. This thing that changes lives in an instant. Obviously, the subject is interesting to me, but I guess unless you are somehow involved with someone who is affected by cancer, you might just pay a passing interest to it, as these days we seem to hear the word so frequently now. However, the society in which we now live, revolves around media and news stories. Every form of media is looking for the latest story, and it seems that bad news sells. So when a world famous

Some of the emotions of a stem cell transplant

I have been prompted to write this post, as I have had very recent contact with at least three people that have had stem cell transpants, and are all going through different emotions currently. This is something that I have experienced twice now myself, and have encountered many people that have also had one. A few years ago, a stem cell transplant would be known as a bone marrow transplant. The reason being, that the stem cells are grown in the bone marrow. Most of your own cells are killed with chemotherapy, then you are infused with your donors new stem cells. They find their way into the bone marrow and start forming your new immune system. Like a lot of people, when I first heard ‘ bone marrow transplant ‘ I imagined

Buddying people affected by cancer.

I have decided to write this post as it has been something that has been on my mind for a bit of time, and I was at a meeting last night where my thoughts and feelings were confirmed. Since my diagnosis and significant treatment, I decided that I wanted to help other people that were going through what I was. I knew that my cancer experience alone, was not enough to be able to do that, so I went on The Macmillan Cancer Support Course, which was brilliant, and involved studying a lot of different aspects of cancer and it’s affects on people. I also went on other shorter courses to give me the information that I needed. I then started volunteering at the local cancer centre, to gain some practical experience.