Greetings. Last Friday I was given 2 units of the red stuff as my Hgb levels had dropped to 8.9. I have felt alot perkier since then, getting on with the good things in life. However, my energy levels seem to fluctuate daily: Friday I walked 6 miles in one go, today I need a motivational speaker to pick something up off the floor. I guess thats the way it will be for a while and I just better roll with it. The cough is generally alot better, I should shake it in a few more days. It’s my birthday on Thursday, I will be 34. I made it. Who would have thought? Okay, I need a nap, so I will leave this as a brief update…
Yo wHat’s uP, CaNcEr PosSe? Word uP with all the ilLin’ NEuTz, cHiX & dUdEz!? (Miltcentral.com is now brought to you by MTV-Surfer division)
I’m doing fine apart from a persistent, pesky, IRRITATING cough. Hence this is being written at 2:18am – there are times when it just won’t let me sleep. I shall be in hospital in a few hours for a blood test, so I’ll see what they can do for my cough. I’m not too worried about it as I am generally in a good way. A typical day now involves: 3 hours decent guitar practice, a good hour walk, 2 hours housework (yes, people I’m that kind of guy! NO, not THAT kind of guy!) some admin, some project marking for work, some clothes hunting (what happened to all the decent jeans? Did they get up and walk away when I was in hospital?) some cookin’, playing guitar duets with Bridge (Bach and Jazz stuff), some refreshment in a local teashop, a little reading and some loitering in bookshops. All good life things that living people do. However this is the 3rd night in a row without a good sleep, so am getting a little weary.
But hear me now: I have decided that i am over this cancer crap. (It’s just SO 2004, darling) I’m not scared of it, I feel that I’ve beaten it and I’ve learned all I’ve needed to from it. Frankly, I am bored of it and bored of being a ‘cancer patient’ – and I am indignant about giving it any more of my time. But I am very much still ‘in treatment’ and ‘in danger’ – it’s just I feel like I can take it from here. But this cough is a pain, I’ll be thrilled if I can beat it naturally.
Blood results tomorrow (will I need a transfusion on Friday? Find out here!)
No one messes with me!
Milton AKA Rebel Without Applause
Another significant click today. Impossible to explain precisely, but I felt just a little bit of life in me today. Still tired and weak of course and also have picked up some weird cough- but undoubtedly I feel just a little bit better.
Unfortunately I don’t feel well enough to see Bridget’s pupils at Radley College perform a concert. A collection for Anthony Nolan Trust (how kind) will be made at the end of the concert, once a short speech has been given on the importance of the charity. How quickly life can change.
I felt well enough to walk through the park and up the high street amongst the normal people. Naturally part of me couldn’t help wondering:
“Do these people have any idea who walks amongst them-bald head covered, slightly wobbly with far-off gaze? Do they know the ordeals I have endured? The struggles I have seen? The battles for my very life?”
No, they don’t.
In fact using my very keen mind-reading skills I gathered these, the most popular thoughts in the heads of my fellow pedestrians:
– “Other people MUST notice how sexy and indifferent I look in these extortionately-priced designer sunglasses.”
– “Other people MUST notice how sexy and indifferent I look in these reasonably-priced fake designer sunglasses.”
– (Amongst 16-year olds) “I look SO cool in these massively oversized jeans that keep falling down.”
– (Amongst smokers) “Littering laws don’t count if you are cool enough to smoke”
– (Amongst 13-year olds) “This outfit makes me look like i’m twenty-two years old!”
– (Amongst 40-year olds) “This outfit makes me look like i’m twenty-two years old!”
– (Amongst 22-year olds) “I hope its clear how bored, sexy and indifferent I am.”
– (Amongst poor kids) “Wow, with this massive gold chain, I look like I’m rich!”
– (Amongst rich kids) “Wow, with these shitty trainers, shitty jeans and shitty hair, I look like I’m poor!”
– (Amongst parents out with their kids) “Where did my youth go?” (Either meaning)
– (Amongst teenage kids out with their parents) “Sooooo booooriiing”
– (Single men in bookshops attempting to look eligible) – “Must browse contemporary fiction – Must stay away from Science Fiction section”
– (Single women in bookshops attempting to look eligible) – “Must browse contemporary fiction -Must stay away from Self-Help section”
Speaking of bookshops, I went to Waterstone’s today, sat in a leather armchair and happily read HALF of John O’Farrell’s new novel. I would have read it all but was rudely informed by the man trying to stack my chair (with me in it) that the shop was about to close.
So why didn’t I buy it? No I am not a cheapskate- in fact my LFE (Lifetime Frivolous Expenditure) may equate to the value of a subcontinental country or even a broom cupboard in Kensington. The reason I decided to read the book then and there is that WE ALL HAVE TOO MUCH STUFF!!! And we don’t need it. (Also it wasn’t out in paperback yet)
I have a theory why we all have a tendency to hoard and own so much stuff we don’t need ( Yes YOU. Don’t believe me? Men look through your CDs, books and especially DVDs. Women: Count your shoes) No its not the caveman “Hunter/Gatherer” Theory or the fear-of-time-passing-and-inevitable-death “Material Hoarding” Theory.
My theory is that we are all scared of NOTHING. I don’t mean we are fearless. I mean we are scared of the concept of nothingness, the ether, nada. Deep down we KNOW that we are just comprised of atoms, their nuclei so distant from one another that we rival a Cadbury’s Aero chocolate bar in our scarcity. We are mostly absolutely nothing, occupying an infintessimal fraction of space and with a lifespan that is pathetically fleeting relative to any astral body. Just nothing. Our reaction as nothing-averse people is to coat ourselves with as much STUFF as possible, internally screaming ” I exist! I EXIST!!!”
I say: Let’s all just chill and learn to live with Nothingness for a while. In the meantime please ask yourselves this:
“Does the thought that we are just outlined sections of nothing floating in space, bouncing off but never actually touching anything else, terrify you? If it was true that we are just nothing then how would you chose to live your life?”
No differently I hope!
Okay blood test tomorrow, followed by Waterstone’s to finish that book.
Sweet dreams- Milton
Okay, I would have updated sooner, but it can mainly be summarized with one repeated letter:
Any day of modest activity (Hour-long walk, sorting that mountain of letters etc) is followed by a day with 20 hours of sleep (no exagerration) I guess I have been knocked to the ground and this is where I start (FAME!) paying…
Went to Hammersmith Hospital on Monday for a routine blood test and got some pretty encouraging results:
Hgb: 10.6 Platelets: 308 WBC: 5.6 Neuts: 3.8
Which apart from being slightly anaemic, are NORMAL results ie. what YOU might have(unless you happen to be a neutropenic reader) Crazy, huh? Have been imagining a Mid-September return to work. That gives me 4-months clear. So better get back to it:
Proud to report that my brother-in-law, Chris Upson (2004 FRA Long-distance Runner of the Year) has returned safely from the Himalayas where he was competing in the gargantuan Everest Lafuma Sky Race. He did fantastically well, finishing every leg of the race in 12th position or higher!(Out of 40 top runners) The final leg Chris finished 7th, beaten only by the 6 sherpas! He is incredible! Many thanks to those who supported him,
*a true milthead knows what this means
People I am gone, solid gone. 5/5/5 has neatly heralded my discharge from le hospital mes amis. Today’s counts (with yesterday’s in parentheses) read:
WBC: 2.6 (2.1) Neuts: 1.1! (0.8) Platelets 272!(similiar) Hgb 9.7 (9.7)
Although my immunity is compromised, these are reasonably safe levels with which to go home and they are ON THE RISE. Why? Because Alex’s, well, my, bone marrow is working. Put THAT in your pipe and smoke it!
Of course I am still under treatment for leukaemia, have major potential dangers ahead, am yet to receive an ‘all-clear’ biopsy, have a 2-week supply of drugs that would make Hunter S. Thompson blush and have still got a lot of recovering to do BUT this marks something extremely significant for me. (By the way, feel free to break up any of my sentences into GCSE bite-size nuggets.)
Took me, well my mum, all morning to unpack the hospital room. I did leave one thing though and it’s written in big blue letters…hehe.
I’m home, it feels good. The updates will not stop. Back in Monday for blood tests and now that mountain of letters…