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 at 19:56

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