ON YOUR MARKS, GET SET…THE MYELOMA CHALLENGE

I’m 39 years old, no history of illness, Ironman finisher who has been diagnosed with myeloma. Did not see this coming. This blog summarises my journey from unexpected diagnosis through the treatment path. My aim is to use myeloma as a catalyst for living a better, more fulfilling life and documenting the changes I am making in all aspects of my family and work commitments.

“They’ve done studies, you know. 60 percent of the time, it works every time.”

Warning. If you have never seen Anchorman, some of the following will make no sense what-so-ever. Take this as a prompt to hit Netflix.

You can thank me later

__________________________________________________________________

Oh, Baxter, you are my little gentleman. I’ll take you to foggy London town, because you are my little gentleman

Ron Burgundy 2004

 

Ah, how I’ve missed the familiar click and whirr of my good friend Baxter.

Sadly not the dog of Ron Burgundy Anchorman fame.

This Baxter has been my noisy, clunky sidekick for the last year, keeping me pumped full of chemicals to kick the myeloma into touch.

In March, we mutually agreed to take a 4 week break in our relationship in which time I wholly enjoyed my freedom from the clingy demands and limitations. But we have been  harmoniously reunited this morning in a conjugal whirlwind of cables and chemicals. (not half as fun as it sounds)

Different hospital, same environment and I still don’t feel like I should be in here. All the people around me are much older and clearly unwell (or just really old 🙂). And as I was considerately reminded again when I arrived today, I am soooo young for a myeloma patient.

I f***ing know that!!

Obviously I didn’t blurt out that response to the nurse; my diplomacy filter is still just about intact after morphine-gate.

And I really am grateful to have been looked after so well so far; but I steadfastly refuse to take this as the new world. I can hear many of you saying that by now, I need to simply accept the new reality and stop fighting it.

It is what it is and why make life more stressful than it needs to be?

Well, my belief is that the to’ing and fro’ing from hospital and the constant cycle of drugs, like the bald head, is temporary and subject to the stem cell transplant being a success, I will be able to operate for a decent period of time at least, as I did before March 2017 happened.

Whether this is realistic or not, for the purpose of dealing with the present, it gives me a focus; something tangible. Without a goal, I’d be meandering along with nothing more than an emotive hope and that’s just not enough. I’m trying to use my stubbornness as a force for good!

Hence the importance I’m placing on getting as many people as possible signed up to the stem cell donor list…

BREAKING NEWS

… which 30 seconds ago took a mildly dispiriting twist.

The nurse just told me that 2 people, one in Germany and one in the USA, had been identified as potential matches; but that after multiple attempts to contact them they removed themselves from the register!

This has to be up there as candidate for the ultimate cruel tease.

As Ron so eloquently decreed

“I’m in a glass case of emotion!”

On the plus side it goes to show that there are other mongrel genetic hybrids out there so the challenge is clear and simple

GET THE WORLD SIGNED UP!

________________________________________________

Broken record time but thank you all again for registering, liking, tweeting and running events to do just this. Of the many positives that have come from the last year, your support and commitment is the most clearcut and has been second to none.

Check out my media savvy parents plugging the cause thanks to the Fitness Machine team in Whitby!

One example of many.

Lady luck may have deserted me in the health stakes but she surely  hasn’t turned her back on me with my friends and family.

So, to close, this is what the next 4 weeks looks like.

16th to the 22nd April – Chemo and injections to stimulate stem cell growth. Luckily they are letting me do the injections at home so less time in the Christie.

23rd April – Back in the Christie to get a stem cell count. Hopefully, enough to initiate the transplant. If not, then another week of injections.

Once enough stem cells are harvested, there is a 2 week break (Baxter and I are happy with this arrangement) before I begin my extended stay in the Christie; early May is pencilled in.

In a strange way, I’m glad this phase of proceedings has finally kicked off. It’s been the dark cloud hovering over the horizon for so long. Of course I’ve done my background reading and am aware of the unpleasantries that are going to follow but as stated above, my goal is greater than the temporary inconvenience of being knocked out for a month or so.

Just another step forwards.

So to one and all…

 

You stay classy

 

 

 

 

Next Post

Previous Post

2 Comments

  1. Nick W 17th April 2018

    Pete, as corny as it sounds, you make me want to be a better man. I am amazed at how you stay so strong (although I’m sure that it doesn’t always feel like that). You are genuinely an inspiration for everyone. Mind you, you are kind of a big deal around here. Stay classy!

  2. SHEILA & JIM 17th April 2018

    And you stay strong…………
    Next up – Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues……
    The Smarties.

Leave a Reply

© 2018 ON YOUR MARKS, GET SET…THE MYELOMA CHALLENGE

Theme by Anders Norén