Sunday 1st January, 2012

An Eventful New Years Day

With the arrival of the New Year, the significance of my appointment with the consultant on January 16th is beginning to register. For the last four months, I have been living from day to day and coping with the (relatively minor) side effects of the chemotherapy. On 16th January, I will find out whether it has had the desired effect. Today the news reported the death of a ex professional footballer in hid mid 40s from non-Hodgkins lymphoma, which is what I have. That reminded me that the outcome of my treatment is not a forgone conclusion. The statistics are on my side; I have God on my side; I feel so much better than I did last August. BUT, I have to be prepared for any outcome from the scan on January 11th.

I am not losing sleep. Lots of people are praying for me, so I am confident that Sue and I will be able to cope with anything now.

Today was an eventful day, but everything that threatened to become a big problem was resolved easily.

We had a lazy morning, staying in bed until 10am and then having a leisurely breakfast in the hotel. I am still surprised at how well I m sleeping.

On the way back to Basingstoke, we stopped off at Savill Garden. Although there were thich grey clouds, it was dry and very mild for the time of year, and I really do need to get exercise. As usual these days, when we started to walk, I was very stiff and the first few hundred yards were quite uncomfortable. Again, as usual, I loosened up and for the first time for almost a year, I managed to walk to the summer house at the far end of the garden. My walking is very slow. Any attempt to walk faster outs pressure on the muscles around my LEFT hip (it is the right hip that has been damaged by the cancer).

When we started to walk back towards the entrance, it started to rain, gently at first but then turned into a real downpour. Winter trees don't offer much shelter and I could only walk at one pace. By the time we got back to the coffee bar for a cup of tea, we were wet. My hair has started to regrow, but there is still not much there. One paper napkin was more than enough to dry my hair.

We were expecting to get home in the early afternoon and go to The Hatch for a meal before going to church in the evening, but things did not turn out that way.

First of all, our intelligent car came up with a message to check tyre pressures, rapidly followed by a banging noise that accompanies a completely flat tyre. For various reasons, there was no way I could attempt to change a tyre, so we called the AA breakdown service. Even on New Years Day, the service was excellent. We were on our way in little over an hour, but on a very small spare tyre limited to 50 mph. Strangely, we still had the check tyre pressure message, because the system was monitoring the pressure in the flat tyre in the boot!

The next stage in our plan was dinner at The Hatch. When we got there, the kitchen was closed, so we moved on to the Harvester at Brighton Hill. We realized why we don't go to the Harvester very often. We sat down quickly, but it was more than an hour before the main course was served. We only just got through in time to go to church.

The evening service at St. Mary's was quiet. The talk challenged everybody to think about their relationship to God in 2012.

We finally got home at 8.15, by which time I was very stiff. I think I am going to try taking Paractemol tomorrow.