I’m still here, slowly getting back to ‘normal’ or at least something close to what was normal.
Two months after my last chemotherapy treatment and I am still experiencing the after effects, although they are gradually disappearing. Too slow for me, but then I have always held unrealistic expectations about the pace at which I would recover. Energy levels are also returning slowly and I am finding that I can last a whole week in work without falling asleep at my desk.
When you have had the experience I have over the past 10 months, you do have a tendency to be more aware of what comes out of your body in waste form. Obviously, the first real sign that something was wrong last year was found sitting in the toilet bowl. So, last weekend I was troubled by the emergence of bright red poop, followed by a sparkling pink tinkle. In these circumstances, once I have gotten over the initial surprise, I have taught myself to think logically and sensibly about what the problem could be.
Beetroot! Feckin’ beetroot. Earlier in the day I had eaten a fairly large quantity of chilli spiced baby beetroot and of course the colour quickly runs through your system to create a lovely shade of poop red! Panic over and note to self, don’t eat beetroot however much you may enjoy it.
Living with my very own ‘bag for life’ has become pretty routine. I’ve had to make some minor changes, including the addition of a set of braces to keep my strides in position for the working week. They don’t come out at the weekend. I still have to be aware in case a rogue fart creeps out in the middle of an important meeting and causes embarrassment, but other than that it is all pretty normal.