The dreaded moment when you’re looking at an Oncologist and waiting to be given some news. I’d been to a routine annual Asthma clinic, referred to my General Practitioner (GP), referred to a specialist, had a bunch of tests, and now referred to an Oncologist. There were many hints along the way, but it did not reduce the out of body experience I was having that day. This happens to other people but not me.
I felt in control.
Rewind 2 months to May 2010…… I was happily working, getting stuff done, making things work. I had sufficient autonomy and freedom of manoeuvre. I felt in control. I’m happy as a pig in the proverbial! My annual Asthma clinic comes along and it’s an opportunity to work at home for the day….yahoo – no commuting! “Hi Ronny” – “Hi Liz”. Blah Blah Blah. However, glad Liz was taking it seriously – I just wanted to get back to my laptop, things to do…… After the usual tests and checks, we commenced the AOB (any other business) – “I think I’m a bit lighter than I thought I was”….”Did you mean to lose the weight?”…..”no”. Just to be sure, Liz gave me a blood test form. Had I known at the time that this was probably the most important document I might have ever held in my hand, I would have driven straight down to Bournemouth Hospital and had the test done. However, that form sat in my in-tray for around three weeks…… I was too busy on my laptop, things to do…….. To cut a long story short, my blood results were not right, and the discrepancy needed further investigation.
I even went on holiday to Barbados not thinking anything was wrong. It was a fantastic holiday and I had been working really hard, I needed it. I had no idea that as I was relaxing on the beach sipping Piña coladas, I had a 3cm mass in my mesentery, long chains of lymph node metastases, multiple liver metastases, lymph nodes growing my left armpit, and scary fibrosis growing in my retroperitoneal cavity fusing my aorta (main arterial route of the body) and my inferior vena cava (IVC) (the largest vein of the body) – in reality, my body was slowly dying.
In hindsight, I’m glad I didn’t know. One thing led to another and on 26 July 2010, I met with an Oncologist. He dispensed the news that I had metastatic and incurable Cancer and without treatment, I would probably die because of it (…. I did ask!).
The 48 hours prior to that meeting were to add to the drama of the event and it’s a story I would not like to repeat – read about it here
At the end of that meeting, I no longer felt in control
But thank you Liz – I often think about what might have transpired without that blood test. Listen to me explain my diagnosis here: CLICK for the video.
Check out my entire diagnostic, therapy, and surveillance story here.
The two pictures below were taken in Barbados a month before I was diagnosed. Glad Chris and I didn’t know what was coming, we had a great time. My ‘hamster cheeks’ are no longer there! (…… fast forward to 2022, I’m sure they are returning!)
Back in control
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