Diagnosis Cancer is nothing like Diagnosis Murder. Dick Van Dyke is not skipping down the halls singing ‘Chimchimeree’ (although may I take a second to suggest this to the show’s producers?), as far as I know there was no questionable murder mystery taking place in the wards (although smiley Geoff in Ultrasound with the ridiculous bow tie did look a bit suss) and that sense of inane boredom particular to daytime TV was definitely lacking. Diagnosis Cancer, Episode 1 was shocking, scary and very surreal. There were tears from the mother, awkward silences from the Doctor and a feeling from the patient that this was all happening to someone else, not me.
I’d been having really bad pain in my shoulder since September which I thought was muscular tension since it felt like a trapped nerve and I was planning on seeing a physio at some point when I had enough pennies in the bank. Have you seen physio fees lately?!! But at the beginning of November I started to get chest pains and had difficulty breathing. After a quick visit to Alcohol & Emergency, a chest x-ray revealed that I had a growth on the right side of my chest and since then the past 3 weeks have involved an impressive array of tests to try and work out what the problem is. After establishing that I didn’t have TB or pneumonia the Doctor confirmed today that I have 3 malignant cancerous tumours, one on the right side of my chest, one hiding behind my heart and another on top of my right kidney.
To be honest, after so many tests, deep down I was expecting the Doctor to confirm this was cancer. But on a positive note, I also feel sure deep down that everything's going to be fine. I've been more concerned with other people's reactions, perhaps so that I don't have to confront mine. I've already felt all sorts of emotions, at various times strong, scared, positive, confused, excited about opportunities this will bring and the chance to help others, worried about my friends, family and boyfriend Kofi, reflective but best of all, I feel surrounded by incredible love and support from more people I could ever imagine and I know that this will get me through.
- Sophie passed away on Monday 14 December but this blog was very important to her in her last few weeks. We will add the last few things she wanted to post so please do continue to read and comment in her memory. --------------------------------------------------------------------- On Wednesday 25 November 2009 I was diagnosed with cancer. This blog shares my stories, thoughts and fears about treatment and my hopes for the future.