But life has taken a strange turn of late. At the end of June I visited my doctor complaining that I was having problems swallowing food. Pasta seemed to get stuck in my throat, and I would repeatedly end a meal with a bout of hiccups.
The doctor sent me for a battery of tests, including a fibroscopy, which confirmed, via a biopsy, that I had a tumour in my throat. That was on the 16th July. On the 16th August I was fitted with tubes for Chemotherapy and I begin treatment later today.
It is a strange illness, or condition, in that I do not feel unwell at all. I have been out riding my bike regularly, running up and down the lanes around our house, and last week I was swimming in the sea. I am keeping my fingers crossed that my general good health will help see me through.
It has been a tough situation for my family. The rapid diagnosis was a shock, and there have been worries and nightmares for all of us but the French health system has been incredibly thorough and my schedule of appointments is reassuringly comprehensive.
I am prepared; I have nail varnish to protect my fingernails from UV light, I have concentrated protein drinks, I have an array of drugs, I have Netflix, I have a supportive family (lets see who volunteers to help paint my nails!), so I am very lucky and as a friend said, this is an ideal time to write some more poetry and read a book or ten!
I have since discovered that this type of cancer can almost be asymptomatic. My own tumour is already at Stage 3 (of 4), so if you notice anything odd, the advice has to be, go and see your physician right away. It could be nothing at all, or, as in my case, it could be something that will demand your attention…
What shocking news. I hope your general good health carries you through this as easily as possible.
Thank you. I have more time to read poetry too. Your output astonishes me!
Thank you so much. You have been an inspiration to me with your wonderful tales and personal adventures into a new life.