Sean and Jane came up on the Sunday from Wellington, as part of a pre planned trip. And I got my Drama queen crown. Complete with poking stick, "Cath" Bell (rather than call bell), ear plugs (for if other doctors start yapping), note pad, stamp, ID display (so people know I'm the boss) and all sorts of other goodies - including a parcel from mum and dad and baking from Roisin.
It was very cool to be able to sit down and just hang out with them. And then to eat. I have no reason not to eat whatever I like at the moment (apart from the fact I don't really feel like it) so when I do feel like it I can have all the creamy sauces, the deep fried food, rare steak and then dessert!
We are so lucky to have such amazing friends and family. For those who have sent messages and emails that I may not have responded to, I am sorry. I have appreciated every single message and treasure them. I just haven't been able to write reply's to everyone.
One of the hardest things that we have been going through is facing the issue of infertility. The radiotherapy and chemo have a 100% chance of putting me into early menopause, and the radiotherapy itself would mean I would never be able to carry a child. Its tough, especially as we had thought about just getting my exam out of the way and then deciding when to have children. So rather than the few months to years we thought we had to make a decision we had 4 days. 4 days to decide if we were going to try for IVF. It scared me, and still does. No one can tell us 100% what effect the hormones would have on the tumor, although the residing opinion is that it would be safe. We weren't sure if we could handle the extra emotional battle that it might throw at us with even more hormones. Then we have to pray that it works, that they can get the eggs, that they can be fertilised, that they can be frozen, that they can be thawed at some point in the future, and that we can find a surrogate. phew. thats a lot of hoping and finger crossing. But, it came down to a simple equation. If we tried, we might have a chance, if we didn't then that was it for any chance of biological children.
We will still have the option of adoption to consider, and I know a number of very lovely people who have been adopted, we're just not sure it's for us, and thankfully, for once this week, we don't have to make that decision straight away.
So yesterday off we went to the fertility appointment. I didn't realise it was going to be quite as long as it was, which wasn't a problem, apart from having to do a 24 hour urine collection to check my kidney function. Yup, pee in a bottle for 24 hours. (The things us doctors make patients do!) So there we are, half way through seeing all the different people, when I really have to pee. Luckily there was a lab down stairs, so I managed to get another bottle, but they gave me a nearly clear plastic bag to put it in. So there I am, in a building with a whole lot of people I know and have recently worked with, holding a bottle which is half full of pee. We couldn't stop giggling. We had to make a quick dash into the pharmacy to buy a bag so that we could hide it!
It was while we were getting my new drug supply (for IVF) that it was confirmed that treatment will not start until the 15th of Feb. Up until that point in the day we had been doing quite well, but I lost it then. I managed to make it to the car before I started crying. Tears just running down my face, and I couldn't stop them. Another week. It feels like forever.
When I got home I tried to see if I could make any of the appointments privately, caus maybe that would speed things up. No Joy. Some of them just have to be done at the hospital. Can't see the doctors any earlier, can't start the treatment any earlier. we just have to wait.
It was probably the second worst day in the last 2 weeks.
My parents arrived not long after. We weren't expecting them, and it was a bit of a shock. They are just such amazing people. They saw we needed a bit of space, and despite that more than anything they just wanted to be here for us, they left again, and gave us some space. And I know that that is true love. Once we had pulled ourselves together a bit, they came back, and it really was a great relief to see them.
We didn't do much. Just sat on the couch and watched TV. But it was lovely.
I started my IVF injections last night. Strange how it is so easy for me to stick needle in someone else, but when I was faced by this tiny (and I mean TINY) needle I almost couldn't do it. I would never make a good diabetic, or druggie, I just hate needles too much! But I did it, it wasn't too bad, and there aren't that many more to go.
I have just got back from having some more blood tests (I can cope when other people are doing the needling) and from seeing Mum and Dad again. Next week is starting to fill up with more appointments and Rob may even go back to work a bit.
So for today, there isn't much more to add. I think I have filled in the last 2 weeks, and I will try to add a bit more every few days, if there is something to add. Most likely it will just be random rambling thoughts and updates.