Thursday, 16 June 2011

Did your mother breastfeed you?

Actually, I wasn't asked that question at my psychological assessment, so perhaps my psychologist was not of the Freudian persuasion :-) I was asked about my early childhood, what I remembered before starting school, what my schooldays were like etc. And of course, lots about how I felt about being told I have cancer, the very short timescales involved, the invasive treatment, the facial palsy and my future treatments. There were tears but there was laughter too. The outcome is that I have been offered an initial 6 sessions of what is called "Disease Process" counselling (shocker of a name, isn't it?) and I can choose when to have them and keep them fairly ad hoc, resources permitting. I am pleased I have been offered this, as it's the chance for me to sound off, shout, cry, be angry, pensive, whatever, with someone who is an objective professional. I am also pleased that it is up to me when I have these sessions, as one of my big problems has been that I feel I have virtually no control over  my life at the moment, so anything that puts control and decision-making firmly in my hands is very welcome.

The psychologist said that I had a very rational approach to my illness and its effects and that I had identified some good coping strategies for things such as when people stare at me. She also said that I obviously have a very good, caring network of family and friends around me - that's all of you, that is! Not having to worry about how to get to my radiotherapy appointments because so many of you are volunteering to take me is a huge relief to me and to Neil, as it takes a big burden off him.

Sue drove me to hospital and we had lunch on the way  in a very nice restaurant by a lake. Again, doing something normal is good for my recovery. We both chose chicken with a wild mushroom, banana and shallot jus (!) - unusual and very tasty.

Plans for today - meeting my minister (who is also a friend) in one of our local cafes later this morning and having a visit from a friend later this afternoon. In between times, physio, resting and listening to music or the radio. My life is certainly not as action-packed with activity as it was!! However, I am almost ready to go swimming, as backstroke will really help my shoulder and, although I am not fond of swimming (can't help but find it immensely boring!) , it will at least mean that I am doing some exercise. I thought I might also be able to use the exercise bike and do some squats and gentle lunges, so perhaps next week I might start going to the gym again. I have a membership and I am not afraid to use it!!


  1. Whoops, left a comment on yesterday's not today's. Guess that what happens when you have tears of admiration stinging your eyes. x

  2. Rational? Toi? ;-D The shrink has obviously not seen you under the influence of bubbly.

  3. I prefer to swim with an ipod Ali. Get a waterproof cover and water proof earphones (not a fortune) and away you go. It's really relaxing

  4. Swimming and cycling are both great :) x

  5. I am liking the iPod solution, Madge - I could listen to some appropriate music (Handel's Water Music, perhaps??).

    If I do swimming and cycling, maybe that triathlon will happen one day, ha ha!!

  6. Is it time to knit a wetsuit ;-p

  7. I am an excellent and supportive Sherpa if you do ever go over to the dark side ;-)

    I was going to suggest putting The Waterboys or Beachboys on the ipod but you are more intellecshual than me with your Handel.

  8. Derek aka Reading Eagle19 June 2011 19:56

    I keep following your blog, but its hard to find the right words. Love you to bits my mile 17 hero.