I was diagnosed with colon cancer in 2005. At the time was living in Nova Scotia, Canada. I had no warning. OK actually I had, but being male I ignored it. And here’s my first piece of advice – do not ignore the small signs. When I reflected back, I realized that all the minor spotting of blood in my shit was my body telling me to get a check-up.
So on a sunny, Friday evening in May 2005 a sharp pain bent me double ending the argument I was having with my ex-wife in our kitchen. There followed a scramble to lever me into the truck and a 30 minute drive to the local community health center. The journey was interrupted several times - we had to stop and allow me to throw up.
At the health center, I took my place in A&E along with many others suffering with anything from a bad cold to – well, yours truly with undiagnosed cancer. I gripped the tubular steel chair arms tighter as the pain level rose and actually managed to bend them significantly – probably down to cheap furniture and adrenalin rather than my natural strength. Eventually, the seriousness of my pain got noticed and I was bumped up the queue. An x-ray, a perturbed doctor indicating a shadow which he was unsure of, and a strong suggestion that I be packed back into the truck and taken to one of the main hospitals in the city followed. Apparently my truck would be quicker than waiting for an ambulance!
And there began a long, sometimes painful, sometimes humorous journey of cancer surgeries and therapies, colostomies, foreign metal objects and lawyers. Hopefully this particular blog series will make people wince, smile and nod in agreement at some of my experiences. It is likely not going to be in date order so I beg forgiveness in advance.
I would love to hear from you. Feel free to comment or take issue with me.